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Spectrum: Autism Research News

News Archive

July 2023

Timing is key in treating sensory traits in fragile X

by  /  14 July 2023

An experimental drug improves sensory sensitivities in fragile X model mice — but only if it’s administered after certain brain circuits have formed, according to a new unpublished study.

Blurry photograph of a crowd of people on a street.

Some who lack autism diagnosis carry variants tied to the condition

by  /  13 July 2023

The variants are associated with slight differences in measures of intelligence, income and employment, but the relationship may not be causal.

A woman stands by a window while talking on the phone and holding a pill bottle.

Evidence linking acetaminophen to autism, ADHD under debate again

by ,  /  12 July 2023

As acetaminophen lawsuits make their way through the U.S. court system, researchers reevaluate the quality of the evidence linking in-utero exposure to the painkiller to neurodevelopmental issues in children.


Unknown isoform adds twist to theory of fragile X origins

by  /  11 July 2023

Contrary to conventional wisdom, most people with fragile X syndrome express the FMR1 gene — albeit improperly.

Image of excitatory synapses in mouse brains.

Dispute erupts over role of sticky proteins in astrocytes

by  /  10 July 2023

But multiple independent researchers say they are not convinced by its results, which fail to confirm high-profile findings from 2017.

Speech bubble formed by a network of communication

Community Newsletter: Neuroimaging study size; fragile X RNA

by  /  9 July 2023

This week on social media, researchers discussed sample size in neuroimaging studies and the potential of antisense oligonucleotides to restore the protein lost in fragile X syndrome.

A slice of a cerebellum

Mutation in top autism-linked gene may alter eye reflex

by  /  7 July 2023

The discovery could help clinicians diagnose children who carry mutations in the gene, called SCN2A, and gauge their responses to potential therapies.

A couple drinks tea at a café.

Partner selection may amplify rare variants in children

by  /  6 July 2023

Nonrandom mating — the propensity for people to partner with others who share their traits — can increase the likelihood of autism or other conditions across generations.

A hand holds a compass against a blue background.

Spectrum Launch: Transitioning to industry with Hien Zhao

by  /  6 July 2023

Zhao says her graduate and postdoctoral training prepared her to transition to her job at the biotech company Ionis Pharmaceuticals, where she works to find treatments for Parkinson’s disease and other conditions.

Illustration of a fragile X syndrome chromosome.

New gene-editing method flags fragile X mutation for repair

by  /  5 July 2023

The approach prompts cultured cells to correct the genetic mutation in fragile X syndrome using their own DNA repair system, but it still needs to be tested further.