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Spectrum: Autism Research News

Author

Laura Dattaro

Senior News Writer

Laura Dattaro is a senior reporter for Spectrum, where she covers genetics, mental health, public policy and other areas of autism research. She proposed and writes the Null and Noteworthy newsletter, a monthly recap of studies with null results and replications. She joined Spectrum in 2020. Dattaro has worked as a science journalist and editor for 10 years and has written for the Columbia Journalism ReviewPopular MechanicsSlate and The New York Times, among other publications. Before joining Spectrum, she also worked as associate producer for the World Science Festival. Dattaro has an M.A. in science and health journalism from Columbia University and a B.A. in English and music from the University of Delaware. You can find her on Twitter at @LauraLauraDat or reach out to her at [email protected].

Contact Info

[email protected]

August 2022
Woman talks to child in EEG cap

Brain’s response to faces foretells social development in autistic people

by  /  17 August 2022

A delayed brain response to viewing faces may predict lags in social-skill development in autistic people.

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July 2022
Scientist examining DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid) results on a screen in a laboratory.

How an expert panel evaluates genes for autism genetic tests

by  /  22 July 2022

About 15 percent of genes currently included in clinical genetic tests for autism or intellectual disability don’t have enough evidence to support their ties to the conditions, the panel found.

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Week of JulyJul
11th
2022

Spotted around the web: Mitochondrial genome, anorexia nervosa, drowning prevention

by , ,  /  15 July 2022

Here is a roundup of news and research for the week of 11 July.

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A mother holds her son while on a video call with a doctor.

Access to virtual autism therapy in U.S. could narrow post-COVID

by  /  15 July 2022

When the federal public health emergency expires, so too could temporary insurance coverage of applied behavior analysis conducted remotely. A proposed rule could block those changes, however, at least for people with public insurance.

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Figure in space heads towards unknown, dark area.

The final frontier: Autism geneticists take on the noncoding genome

by  /  12 July 2022

The vast stretches of DNA that don’t code for proteins could fill key knowledge gaps about autism genetics. But making sense of it all won’t be easy.

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Evidence for remote autism assessments trickles in

by  /  8 July 2022

More than two years into the COVID-19 pandemic, emerging data support the remote tactics that kept autism diagnosis going during lockdowns.

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June 2022

Mice without DDX3X are slow to grow neurons

by  /  17 June 2022

The gene helps neurons exit the cell-maturation cycle during fetal brain development, a new study shows. But male and female mice respond differently to DDX3X loss.

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Illustration of hybrid objects: part light bulb, part lab vial, some in blue and some in red to signify null and replicated results.

Null and Noteworthy: INSAR keynote, typical cerebellums, social subdomains

by  /  9 June 2022

In this edition, researchers sink a purported link between cerebellar volume and autism and buoy a theory about measuring social behaviors.

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a grid of 9 brain maps showing activity in different areas of the brain

Brain networks diverge in autism by toddlerhood

by  /  8 June 2022

By as early as age 2, autistic children appear to have a smaller salience network and a larger default mode network, among other differences, than children without the condition.

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A street crowded with pedestrian traffic

Spectrum of variants contribute differently to autism traits

by  /  3 June 2022

Different combinations of common, rare, inherited and spontaneous mutations may explain why traits vary so widely among autistic people.

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