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Spectrum: Autism Research News

Tag: language

April 2011

Imaging biomarkers could signal autism spectrum disorder

by  /  12 April 2011

There does not appear to be a single genetic or environmental cause of autism, and given the heterogeneity of symptoms, coming up with a clear yes or no test for autism is challenging. Timothy Roberts argues that imaging and electrophysiology are key in the search for autism biomarkers.

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Clinical research: Onset of autism doesn’t predict outcome

by  /  8 April 2011

Regression, a sudden loss of language and social ability, does not lead to more severe autism, according to a study published in March in the Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders. The study suggests that how autism develops does not influence the long-term outcome of children with the disorder.

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Genetics: New autism mouse reveals candidate gene

by  /  6 April 2011

A new mouse model for autism has obsessive behaviors and is less social and emits fewer vocalizations than controls, according to a study published 17 March in Behavioral Brain Research. These features could be be the result of much higher levels of FAM46, a gene of unknown function that may be involved in signaling between cells.

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Pet projects

by  /  1 April 2011

Dogs, cats, horses, dolphins, gerbils — could animals be the key to helping people with autism?

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March 2011

Genetics: Parkinson’s disease gene linked to autism

by  /  30 March 2011

Two children with Asperger syndrome have disruptions in the PARK2 gene — one child has a duplication in the gene whereas the other has a deletion — according to a study published in February in the American Journal of Medical Genetics.

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Why fold Asperger syndrome into autism spectrum disorder in the DSM-5?

by  /  29 March 2011

In the new diagnostic manual for psychiatric disorders, Asperger syndrome will be folded into autism spectrum disorder. Francesca Happé, a member of the committee that made the recommendation, explains the rationale behind the decision.

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Cognition and behavior: Children with autism make more sounds than words

by  /  18 March 2011

Toddlers with autism have typical — although delayed — language skills, but produce more growls, yells and, especially, squeals than do typically developing children, according to a study published in February in Autism Research.

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Genetics: Cell communication pathway linked to autism

by  /  16 March 2011

Mutations in a gene that organizes synapses — the junctions between neurons — may increase the risk of autism, according to a study published in February in Autism Research. The study bolsters evidence linking a pathway involved in cell-to-cell communication to autism.

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Cognition and behavior: Music is promising autism therapy

by  /  15 March 2011

Integrating music into interventions helps children who have autism with their social skills, language and behavior. But methods should be standardized and tested for effectiveness at home, according to a meta-analysis published in January in the Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders.

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False-belief tasks are distinct from theory of mind

by  /  15 March 2011

Languages lacking words for feelings can lead to ‘mind-blindness,’ a feature of autism, according to a 2009 study. Cognitive neuroscientist Helen Tager-Flusberg argues that language delay only partially explains the theory of mind deficits seen in people with autism.

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