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Spotted around the web: Week of 11 March 2019

by  /  15 March 2019

WEEK OF
March 11th

Research roundup

  • Training community-based therapists to use an intervention called ‘AIM HI’ helps decrease challenging behaviors in autistic children. JAMA Psychiatry
  • Male mice lacking an enzyme involved in the release of the ‘bonding’ hormone oxytocin vocalize less than usual as juveniles and have profound social difficulties as adults. The FASB Journal
  • Maternal infection during pregnancy may increase the risk of autism and depression in the child, according to a large population study. JAMA Psychiatry
  • A literature review examines how gender differences influence autism diagnoses — and the lack thereof — in girls and women. Current Psychiatry Reports
  • In the eye of the beholder: Neurotypical people’s perceptions and biases play a huge role in how they interact with autistic individuals. Autism
  • Using social robots in cognitive behavioral therapy may help improve autistic children’s understanding of emotions. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders
  • Autism diagnoses have decreased since the publication of the fifth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders

Science and society

  • Taking folic acid supplements during pregnancy may lower the child’s risk of autism. Popular Science
  • Fostering cultural diversity in science laboratories is easier said than done. Scientific American
  • A personal trainer on the spectrum opens a gym for people with autism. CNN
  • A researcher at the genetic testing company 23andMe advocates increasing the diversity of genetic databases. STAT
  • Montana education officials propose controversial new criteria to define autism that could hinder autistic children’s access to services in school. The Charlotte Observer
  • The reference genome that came out of the Human Genome Project appears to reflect its Buffalo, New York, origins — which means it is largely white and European. STAT
  • The discovery of semi-identical twins expands what we know about human fertilization processes. The New York Times
  • A 15-year-old boy in Massachusetts says, “I am a budding sports journalist who just happens to be autistic.” Boston Herald
  • Under pressure, Amazon removed from its online marketplace two books hawking autism ‘cures,’ such as drinking bleach. The New York Times
  • Researchers expose animals to virtual-reality setups to gain an understanding of visual processing in the brain and sensory perception. Nature
  • Neurogeneticist Kevin Mitchell writes about the complex relationship between genes and behavior. Aeon

Funding news

  • The Trump administration proposes a budget that cuts $5.5 billion in funding for the National Institutes of Health. STAT

Job moves

  • The Trump administration plans to name Ned Sharpless, director of the National Cancer Institute, as acting commissioner of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in April. STAT