Spectrum: Autism Research News
William Catterall studies the role of voltage-gated ion channels in neuropsychiatric disorders.
On 24 June, William Catterall explained how low doses of an anxiety drug alleviate autism-like symptoms in mice. He is professor of pharmacology at the University of Washington in Seattle.
A long-standing theory posits that autism may arise from an imbalance of excitatory and inhibitory signals in the brain. Catterall’s team has collected mounting evidence over the past five years suggesting that benzodiazepines — a class of drugs prescribed for anxiety — may help restore this balance in some instances.
A very small dose of one of these sedatives boosts inhibitory brain signals and alleviates autism-like symptoms in mice. In this webinar, Catterall presents results from these mouse studies and discusses their implications for therapy in people with autism.
You can watch a complete replay of the webinar above.
Use the comments section below to submit questions we didn’t have time to discuss during the Q&A session or to pose follow-up questions for Catterall.