Poorly designed animal drug studies for motor disorders have led to spurious conclusions for the clinical trials that follow. This may be even more true for autism research, says Michael Ehlers.
Spectrum: Autism Research News
Expert opinions on trends and controversies in autism research.
Researchers should investigate a broad spectrum of human- and animal-derived tissues to fully capture the complexity of autism, say Michael Talkowski and James Gusella.
Thought until recently to only coordinate motor skills, the cerebellum is involved in diverse cognitive functions such as language and social interaction, and may play a role in autism, says Emanuel DiCicco-Bloom.
Sequencing studies over the past few years have made a dramatic and unexpected discovery: Many of the mutations in individuals with autism are in genes that regulate chromatin, which helps package DNA in the cell nucleus, say Gerald Crabtree and Aryaman Shalizi.
Long pieces of RNA that do not code for protein have diverse and important roles in the cell and may contribute to autism risk, say Nikolaos Mellios and Mriganka Sur.
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