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Spectrum: Autism Research News

Tag: language

August 2022
Toddler stepping towards parent, in front of window.

What developmental milestones say about autism research: A conversation with Susan Kuo and Elise Robinson

by  /  10 August 2022

Shifts in diagnostic criteria have only added to the condition’s bedeviling heterogeneity, an analysis of smiling, sitting, walking and other early milestones in more than 17,000 autistic children reveals.

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May 2022

Structural brain changes foretell language skills in autistic infants

by ,  /  19 May 2022

Increased white-matter maturation tracks with stronger language abilities later in childhood, but the relationship with cortical thickness is less clear.

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Researchers publish new dataset on minimally verbal autistic people

by  /  18 May 2022

Researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology published the first repository of vocalizations from minimally verbal autistic people. Those with few or no spoken words still produce a range of phonemes, or units of sound, that may serve as developmental markers or intervention targets.

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February 2022
Woman going over homework with distracted child.

Early language loss in autistic children not tied to later communication problems

by  /  28 February 2022

Many autistic children experience language regression for about three months in early childhood, but this lapse does not appear to foretell future communication issues.

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December 2021

Birdsong-related DNA sequences tied to autism-linked genes

by  /  6 December 2021

Genes that appear to play a role in some birds’ ability to learn songs are frequently mutated in autistic people.

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November 2021

Remembering child psychiatrist Michael Rutter

by  /  1 November 2021

Sir Michael Rutter, widely hailed as the ‘father of child psychiatry,’ was part of the team that first showed autism has a genetic component. He died 23 October at age 88.

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September 2021
Mother and child playing with small colored blocks on the carpet.

Uncertainty clouds test of ‘preemptive’ therapy to ease autism traits

by  /  24 September 2021

Experts question data showing that an experimental therapy that parents deliver to babies with early signs of autism can lessen the intensity of the children’s traits and lower their chances of diagnosis at age 3.

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Many people in different areas on a target.

Finding a path forward for fragile X drugs

by  /  23 September 2021

The stubborn lack of treatments for fragile X syndrome — a leading cause of inherited intellectual disability and autism — is spurring researchers to revise clinical trial techniques and revisit old drug candidates.

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researcher holds zebrafinch

Fish, frogs, flies and other fauna in scientific firsts

by  /  8 September 2021

Over the past century, scientists have used a variety of animal models to advance their understanding of the developing brain and autism.

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A lighthearted, colorful, chaotic lab scene with fruit flies, worms peeking out of petri dishes, zebrafish in beakers and an octopus creeping out of a cabinet..

Special report: Unusual animal models of autism

by  /  8 September 2021

In the past two decades, some autism researchers have turned to simple animals, such as roundworms, fruit flies and zebrafish, for their investigations. Others have sought answers from experiments with frogs, birds and even octopuses.

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