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Genes

Rare or common, inherited or spontaneous, mutations form the core of autism risk.

October 2019
News

Signaling imbalance in mutant mice supports key autism theory

by  /  19 October 2019

Mice missing a copy of CHD8, a top autism gene, show a signaling imbalance in their brains — a finding in line with a popular hypothesis about autism’s origins.

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Strand of DNA with one base letter highlighted.
News / Toolbox

DNA technique documents key events in cell history

by  /  18 October 2019

A new method uses mutations in DNA to maintain a detailed record of series of cellular events.

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News

Brain ‘organoids’ point to new drug target for fragile X syndrome

by  /  18 October 2019

New findings hint at why drugs that work in mouse models of fragile X syndrome have not been effective in people.

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News

Single molecule tracks with mutation’s path to autism, cancer

by  /  17 October 2019

A molecule made by mitochondria, the energy factories of cells, might help doctors forecast the impact of mutations in a top autism gene.

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News

Massive project doubles list of genes tied to autism

by  /  17 October 2019

The largest analysis of sequences from autistic people and their families implicates 184 genes in the condition — nearly doubling the previous estimate.

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black and blue striped dress on pregnant woman shows DNA helix
Opinion / Q&A

Rare access to fetal tissue yields valuable insights into autism

by  /  15 October 2019

Molecular biologist Jonathan Mill is probing gene expression’s role in autism in uncharted territory — the fetal human brain.

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News

Study finds unexpected role for top autism gene

by  /  14 October 2019

SETD5, a leading candidate for autism risk, may control thousands of genes by modifying a protein involved in packaging DNA.

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White rice in cage
News

Testing gene therapy for autism in mice? Consider your controls

by  /  3 October 2019

Deleting the mutation from an autism gene may reverse some autism traits in mice, according to a new study. But the results may be a fluke.

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September 2019
News

Genetic registry reaps bounty of new autism genes

by  /  30 September 2019

An analysis of genetic sequences from nearly 500 people with autism and their relatives has linked 13 new genes to the condition. It has also uncovered a genetic cause for autism in about 10 percent of the autistic participants.

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X chromosome with lots of contrasty texture inside, transparent outside
News / Toolbox

Genome structure unlikely to wield major influence on gene expression

by  /  27 September 2019

New findings call into question a fundamental assumption about how genes are regulated.

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