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Spectrum: Autism Research News

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The latest developments in autism research.

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A set of 4 multicolored brain scans showing development of cortical surface area.

New mapping method reveals subtleties of brain development

by  /  21 September 2022

The machine-learning approach could help identify how brain structure differs between autistic and non-autistic infants, the researchers say.

Dr. Edgar helps the participant prepare for the magnetoencephalography (MEG) exam.

Auditory cortex may develop early in autism

by  /  16 September 2022
A well-studied brain response to sound appears earlier than usual in young children with autism.
A patient sits in the waiting room of a doctor's office.

Autism diagnosis in adulthood tied to increased burden of psychiatric conditions

by  /  19 September 2022
Mood, anxiety, personality and eating disorders more commonly affect autistic people diagnosed in adulthood than those diagnosed in childhood.
Geschwind in his lab

Autism researcher Daniel Geschwind nets top National Academies prize

by  /  15 September 2022
The prize recognizes Geschwind’s contributions to our understanding of autism genetics.

Latest News

Two globe and chat bubble hybrids overlap against a blue background.

Community Newsletter: Neuroscience game changers, genetics meeting highlights

by  /  25 September 2022

The talk of the Twittersphere turned around two influential neuroscience papers, plus a virtual trip to the World Congress of Psychiatric Genetics.

A pregnant woman lies in a hospital bed.

Registry review casts doubt on causal link between maternal infection and autism

by  /  23 September 2022

The long-standing link between maternal infection during pregnancy and having a child with autism may reflect common genetic or environmental factors instead.

Set of 6 scans shows mice recovering MECP2 protein in their brainstem after being treated with RNA-editing viruses.

RNA rewrite improves breathing, survival in Rett mice

by  /  22 September 2022

The technique involves editing the cellular instructions to make MECP2 protein and partially restores its levels in the brainstem.

A brown brain model made of paper set against a dark green background.

Community Newsletter: Python primer, pandemic friendship effects, human brain power-up

by  /  18 September 2022

Tickling our brains on Twitter this week were threads about helping neuroscientists learn the programming language Python, a study about autistic schoolchildren, and the possible root of modern humans’ brain power.

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: Brain aging, oxytocin pathways, biomarker back-up

by  /  15 September 2022

Null and replicated results in this month’s newsletter tackle aging, a purported pathway for oxytocin’s effects on autistic people, and a possible autism biomarker.

A brown lab mouse perches on a researcher's hand.

Largest-yet fragile X mutation in mice confirms model’s shortcomings

by  /  14 September 2022

A 341-repeat mutation from a person with fragile X does not lead to the syndrome’s traits or function the same way in mice, highlighting a need for different animal models.

Brain scans demonstrating differences in mice with TBR1 mutations.

Mutation-specific models highlight autism’s heterogeneity

by  /  12 September 2022

The brains of mice carrying different mutations in the autism-linked gene TBR1 display different molecular changes yet similar structural changes, resembling those previously found in autistic people with TBR1 mutations.

Lab mice (Mus musculus), tribe Balbc, three 13 day old babies with eyes still closed, laying side by side

Sleepy mice with autism-linked mutation struggle to fall asleep

by  /  12 September 2022

Mice with a mutated copy of SHANK3 fail to establish normal sleep patterns during development.

Lost sleep sparks lasting social problems in SHANK3 mice

by  /  12 September 2022

Sleep disruption early in life has long-lasting consequences for mice missing a copy of the autism-linked gene SHANK3.

A doctor talks with his patient in an office.

Community Newsletter: Helping autistic adults thrive, grant funding for people with profound autism

by  /  11 September 2022

Two overlooked groups in autism research — autistic adults and people with profound autism — dominated this week’s talk on Twitter.

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