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Spectrum: Autism Research News

News Archive

February 2022
One white ball next to a large group of orange balls.

Women outnumbered among editors of top journals in neuroscience, but not in autism

by  /  23 February 2022

Just 30 percent of editors of neuroscience journals are women, according to a new study. For autism-specific journals, by comparison, women make up 48 percent of editors, a Spectrum analysis shows.


Cerebellum size shows tenuous genetic link to autism

by  /  21 February 2022

Some genomic areas that help determine cerebellar size are associated with autism, schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, according to a new study. But heritable variants across the genome that also influence cerebellar size are not.

Speech bubble formed by a network of communication

Community Newsletter: A call to bring megastudy might to autism behavioral studies

by  /  20 February 2022

Twitter amplified the message that research involving thousands of participants holds the power to produce more clinically significant findings, plus highlights from a meeting in Israel and a new resource to connect researchers and policymakers.

Micrograph of neurons with excess neurons due to excess MECP2 expression.

Protein complex points to new route to Rett syndrome

by  /  18 February 2022

Mutations in a newly identified protein complex that interacts with the Rett protein also lead to a Rett-like condition in mice, researchers say.


Top autism candidate gene tied to newly identified syndrome

by  /  17 February 2022

Mutations in the autism-linked gene PAX5 underlie a range of traits, including developmental delay, intellectual disability, seizures and autism.

Colorful illustration in red and bright aqua blue, of a pizza / pie chart with researcher's hand taking a slice.

By the Numbers: Autism funding over time, West African research, racial reporting

by  /  16 February 2022

This edition of By the Numbers plots the rise of biology-centric autism grants, a dearth of West African autism research and the lack of racial data in intervention studies.


Gut molecule linked to decreased myelination in mouse brains

by  /  14 February 2022

Targeting the molecule, 4EPS, with an experimental drug may be a way to ease anxiety for autistic people, the researchers say. But not everyone is convinced.

A diverse group of elementary age children are sitting together and are watching an educational video on a digital tablet.

Most autism intervention studies lack data on race, ethnicity

by  /  14 February 2022

Only a quarter of more than 1,000 autism intervention studies published since 1990 report on participants’ races and ethnicities, and just one included a Native American participant.

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

Community Newsletter: Do tweets help autism research papers take flight?

by  /  13 February 2022

Tweets this week feature research about the increases in downloads and citations papers get through social-media shares, as well as findings that tie three autism-linked genes to a new point of convergence.

Conceptual illustration of female brain versus male brain.

Searching for the biology behind autism’s sex bias

by  /  11 February 2022

The fact that autism seems to affect more boys than girls is often attributed to diagnostic gaps, but the skew remains largely unexplained. Some scientists are turning to basic biology for answers.