Children with autism are more likely to attempt suicide than their typical peers are, particularly if they are depressed or living in low-income families, says a January study in Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders.
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.
Long-term treatment with risperidone — an antipsychotic approved to treat autism — may boost levels of prolactin, a hormone that stimulates milk production, according to a study published in December in the Journal of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. Risperidone use may also affect sexual function and lead to enlarged breasts in males, the study found.
We are on the verge of a seismic shift in the definition of autism spectrum disorders, says David Skuse. Under proposed guidelines for autism diagnosis, the canard that most people with the disorder cannot speak, or have such disordered language that they cannot sustain a conversation, has been abandoned.
Babies later diagnosed with autism tend to have a heightened response to sights and sounds in their first year of life, and smile and cuddle less as toddlers than controls do, according to a paper published 24 August in the Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders.
Treatment with a single bacterial species curbs anxiety and repetitive behaviors and boosts vocalizations in a mouse model of autism, according to a poster presented Monday at the 2012 Society for Neuroscience annual meeting in New Orleans.
Girls are less likely to be diagnosed with autism than boys are, unless they also have intellectual or behavioral problems, according to a study published 26 June in the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry.
Among siblings of children with autism, those with better prefrontal cortex functioning — observable as relatively strong executive functions for their age — are better able to compensate for atypicalities in other brain systems early in life, and are therefore less likely to receive a diagnosis of autism later in their development, argues Mark H. Johnson.