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Spectrum: Autism Research News

News Archive

December 2022
Illustration of a brain with geometric figures inside of it.

Top conferences of 2023

by  /  22 December 2022

Track some of the major autism science meetings next year on our timeline, and tell us which ones you plan to attend.

Large graphic numerals 40 in black on white.

40 under 40

by  /  22 December 2022

In 2022, we asked our profile subjects and sources to flag rising stars in their labs or among their former students. The result is this list of 40 young researchers who are working on autism-related science across the globe.

A series of colorful, abstract geometric shapes against a light, tan background.

Chronicle of a field retold: Autism science in profile

by  /  19 December 2022

Instead of reflecting on autism through studies or statistics, for Spectrum’s fifth annual book we sought a more personal lens: the lives of the people who research the condition.

Many mouths making conversation, with speech bubbles in red and blue.

Community Newsletter: Chromatin regulators; dysregulated protein synthesis; microglia and myelin

by  /  18 December 2022

This week, scientists on Twitter discussed new functions for autism-linked genes, underpinnings for restricted and repetitive behaviors, and roles for microglia.

A photograph of zebrafish in a lab environment.

DNA unwinder tied to social behaviors in mice, zebrafish

by  /  16 December 2022

Blocking the enzyme, called TOP2A, in embryos makes the animals less inclined to seek companionship later in life.

Figure showing an analysis of gene expression in cells across development.

Highly expressed genes may buffer against autism-linked mutations in girls

by  /  14 December 2022

Such high expression levels may account for the condition’s sex bias, a new preprint suggests — but not everyone agrees with that logic.

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: Reinforcing rigor; medication medley

by  /  14 December 2022

This month’s newsletter highlights findings on the use of three medication types during pregnancy.

Illustration of a pregnant woman seated next to a large diagram of the brain featuring chromosomes, bacteria and other microbes.

The link between maternal infection and autism, explained

by  /  13 December 2022

Having an infection during pregnancy is tied to a small increase in the chances of having an autistic child, but the connection may not be causal.

An illustration of doctors examining a larger-than-life DNA strand

Whole-genome trove ties new genes, variants to autism

by  /  12 December 2022

A massive update to the MSSNG dataset gives qualified researchers ready access to explore autism’s genetic architecture on a cloud-based platform.

Speech bubble formed by a network of communication

Community Newsletter: Autism biomarkers; language preferences; octopus brain atlas

by  /  11 December 2022

This week, Twitter provided a discussion about autism biomarkers, a survey revealing language preferences, and a peek inside the octopus brain.