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Spectrum: Autism Research News

News Archive

June 2009

Study links autism to stem cell development

by  /  23 June 2009

The molecular defects that cause some cases of autism may arise during the development of neuronal stem cells, according to a new theory bolstered by several independent animal and human studies.


Antidepressant does not relieve repetitive behaviors

by  /  16 June 2009

The popular antidepressant Celexa is no better than placebo at reducing repetitive behaviors in children with autism, according to a study published this month in the Archives of General Psychiatry.


Study identifies brain signatures of motor deficits in autism

by  /  9 June 2009

Children with autism rely on conscious planning, rather than habit, to control their movements, according to the first brain imaging study to examine motor performance in the disorder.


Genetic changes during cell splitting may lead to autism

by  /  2 June 2009

Spontaneous deletions and duplications of DNA, which appear with greater frequency in people with autism, sometimes arise after conception, according to a new article in Molecular Psychiatry.

May 2009

Angelman syndrome gene tied to brain’s adaptability

by  /  26 May 2009

A gene linked to autism and other developmental disorders can undermine the brain’s ability to change the strength of connections between neurons.


Laser technique pins source of brain waves linked to autism

by  /  19 May 2009

Researchers have for the first time identified the type of neurons that produce gamma rhythms, the high-frequency brain waves that are thought to go awry in autism and schizophrenia.


Brain images uncover candidate genes for schizophrenia, autism

by  /  12 May 2009

Applying an emerging technique that combines genetic data and brain scans, researchers have identified two new genes involved in schizophrenia. The method, called ‘imaging genetics’, holds promise for linking genes to brain function in complex psychiatric disorders, including autism.


Visual contrast drives face recognition, study finds

by  /  5 May 2009

The answer to a long-standing mystery in visual neuroscience may also help explain how people with autism perceive faces, according to a study published in March in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

April 2009

Genome-wide study fingers first common risk factors for autism

by  /  28 April 2009

Autism results from a diverse mix of common and rare genetic variants, many of which act in pathways that form and maintain connections between neurons. That’s the message from the largest genome-wide association studies of autism to date, published online today in Nature.


Screen for autism risk genes finds two new candidates

by  /  28 April 2009

Scientists have found a handful of genes — including two that had not previously been associated with autism — that may increase risk of the disorder.