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Expert opinions on trends and controversies in autism research.

Cathy Lord in her office at UCLA

Catherine Lord: Lessons from a storied career in autism research

by  /  3 December 2019

Catherine Lord’s career has been defined by relationships: with mentors, protegees and, above all, with autistic people and their families.

Previous articles

November 2019
Eye over brain, with sound coming in at the ear
Opinion / Viewpoint

Sensory troubles may yield key clues to autism’s origins

by  /  26 November 2019

Studies of the brain’s sensory system may provide unique insight into the brain mechanisms that underlie autism and could point to possible treatments.

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Child hesitating in front of a giant eye showing areas of the brain, facial recognition and other connections related to sight.
Opinion / Viewpoint

Seeing connections between autism and blindness

by  /  12 November 2019

Autism is unusually common among people with congenital blindness, in part because the ability to see drives much of brain development.

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Woman on bed sits alone while man sleeps in bed behind her
Opinion / Viewpoint

Why it’s time to be honest about autistic women and sex

by  /  5 November 2019

Misinformation about autistic women and sex is common in the scientific community. A study published this year is a case in point.

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October 2019
Mouse shows friendliness to all mice, friends or strangers
Opinion / Viewpoint

What two rare ‘social’ syndromes reveal about autism

by  /  21 October 2019

Studying Smith-Magenis and Potocki-Lupski syndromes — two single-gene conditions in which people have trouble reading social cues — may boost our understanding of autism.

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Opinion / Viewpoint

What Ehlers-Danlos syndrome can teach us about autism

by  /  21 October 2019

Not much is known about the connection between autism and Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, a condition that affects collagen. But preliminary work provides tantalizing clues.

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Opinion / Viewpoint

Angelman syndrome’s silent gene points way forward for autism therapies

by  /  21 October 2019

Advances in research and help from families have brought scientists to the brink of an effective therapy for Angelman syndrome.

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Brain diagram shows areas where steroids may affect the brain
Opinion / Viewpoint

Extreme male brain theory of autism rests on shaky ground

by  /  1 October 2019

New data linking autism to steroid levels in pregnant women are inconsistent with basic facts about the biochemistry of steroids.

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September 2019
row of babies playing with toys that look like genome sequence
Opinion / Viewpoint

Studies of tuberous sclerosis may shed light on biology of autism

by  /  24 September 2019

Tuberous sclerosis provides a unique opportunity to understand autism because about half of people with that single-gene condition also have autism.

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synapse populations analysis--micrograph shows neurons in green in colorful network
Opinion / Viewpoint

How studying sleep in animals could unearth autism’s roots

by  /  3 September 2019

Sleep problems may contribute to autism’s underlying biology — a connection that scientists can study in animal models.

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August 2019
calendar showing busy ABA schedule with child's frustrated scribbles on top
Opinion / Viewpoint

How much behavioral therapy does an autistic child need?

by  /  27 August 2019

People tend to believe that, regardless of the treatment, more is always better. But is it?

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