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Spectrum: Autism Research News

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Emerging tools and techniques that may advance autism research.

Previous articles
May 2013

Researchers watch as proteins travel to neuronal junctions

by  /  8 May 2013

Using high-resolution microscopy, researchers can watch as signaling complexes assemble at neuronal junctions in zebrafish embryos, according to a study published 17 April in Cell Reports.


Light toggles function of signaling proteins

by  /  1 May 2013

Researchers can use light to activate certain proteins that receive signals at the junctions between neurons and that are key targets for fragile X syndrome therapies, according to a study published in the April issue of Nature Neuroscience.

April 2013

Miniature brain bulbs manipulate neurons

by  /  24 April 2013

A light-emitting device implanted in a mouse brain can activate neurons wirelessly, allowing researchers to control and observe the mouse’s behavior, according to a report published 12 April in Science.


New algorithm plots genes’ relationships

by  /  17 April 2013

A new software algorithm called GAP measures the similarities in the function of more than 19,000 human protein-coding genes, according to a study published 14 March in BMC Systems Biology.


Video game device detects repetitive behavior

by  /  10 April 2013

Researchers have adapted a motion-sensing video game controller to detect repetitive movements that are characteristic of autism, according to a preliminary study published in the 2012 Conference Proceedings – IEEE Engineering Medical Biological Society.


Mice sniff out social deficits in their own kind

by  /  3 April 2013

To define appropriate social behavior for mice, which are often used as laboratory models of human social disorders, it may be best to ask the mice. This is the basis of a new assay for mouse social deficits, published 21 February in Autism Research.

March 2013

Online tool sketches, traces and analyzes neurons

by  /  27 March 2013

Show an image of a neuron to NEMO, a new free software tool, and it will trace the neuron’s shape and detail the length, breadth and number of its branches, scientists who designed the software reported 14 February in Frontiers in Neuroinformatics.


Researchers peer into fetal brains, map connectivity

by  /  20 March 2013

Researchers can use functional magnetic resonance imaging to map fetal brain connectivity during the second and third trimesters of pregnancy, according to a study published 20 February in Science Translational Medicine.


Interaction networks suggest new drug treatments

by  /  13 March 2013

Researchers have used protein and drug interaction networks to identify drugs approved for one disorder that may be useful for treating another, they reported 18 January in Bioinformation.


Atlas maps ‘junk’ DNA that may regulate brain development

by  /  6 March 2013

Researchers have cataloged thousands of DNA regions that may act as enhancers — regulating gene expression from afar — in the developing mouse and human brains, according to a study published 14 February in Cell.


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