A new drug appears to relieve symptoms of fragile X syndrome by blocking the over-production of a key protein in a subset of people with the disorder, according to a 6 January study in Science Translational Medicine.
From parental age to infection during pregnancy, environmental elements can influence autism risk.
Most studies define high-functioning children as those with an IQ above 70 or 80, but this is problematic for a number of reasons, say some scientists. The assumption underlying the use of high IQ as a synonym for high functioning is suspect because social and communicative abilities may have a far greater impact on an individual’s daily interactions.
Over the next five years, dozens of researchers funded by the $40 million ‘NIH Human Connectome Project’ will map the circuits of the human brain, tracing neural pathways and learning how different regions work together in synchrony.
Scientists are changing their minds about the role of microglia, the brain’s strongest and most agile soldiers against damage and infection. In healthy brains, microglia help build and eliminate synapses, the junctions between neurons, according to a study published 2 November in PLoS Biology.
A gene involved in epigenetics — regulation of gene expression by modifying DNA, but without altering the sequence — is associated with autism in families that have only one child with the disorder, according to a study published in November.
Computerized three-dimensional modeling shows nerve cell abnormalities in the hippocampus of fragile X mice — and suggests the importance of raising experimental mice in more natural habitats, according to a poster presented Wednesday at the Society for Neuroscience annual meeting in San Diego.
Young children with autism have high urine levels of a compound that is likely to be a product of gut bacteria, according to a poster presented Tuesday at the Society for Neuroscience annual meeting in San Diego.
Pregnant mice injected with the immune protein interleukin-6 give birth to pups that are less social than normal, an effect that results from the over-activation of two pathways critical in neurodevelopment, researchers reported Tuesday at the Society for Neuroscience annual meeting in San Diego.