TOPIC

Genes

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

March 2010
News

Postmortem brains point to impaired inhibition in autism

by  /  4 March 2010

Researchers have found a higher density of several types of interneurons — nerve cells that connect sensory and motor neurons in the brain— in postmortem brain tissue from individuals with autism, compared with healthy controls. The findings appear in the February issue of Acta Neurologica Scandinavica.

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News

Clinical, animal studies probe DISC1’s role in autism

by  /  1 March 2010

Several genetic and animal studies in the past year have found intriguing ties between autism and DISC1, one of the oldest candidate genes for psychiatric disorders.

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February 2010
News

People with autism stumble on self-other distinctions

by  /  25 February 2010

When thinking about themselves, adults with autism have lower activity in two specific brain regions than do healthy controls, according to an imaging study published in the February issue of Brain.

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News

Dog pedigrees unearth genes for psychiatric disease

by  /  22 February 2010

Researchers are using dogs as models of psychiatric and behavioral conditions, including obsessive-compulsive disorder and autism.

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News

Pregnancy drugs increase baby’s autism risk, group claims

by  /  16 February 2010

A class of medications widely used during pregnancy to treat asthma and prevent early labor increases the baby’s risk of autism and other psychiatric disorders, according to a controversial review in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology.

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News

Rare deletions on chromosome 16 tie autism to obesity

by  /  10 February 2010

Individuals who carry a large and rare deletion on chromosome 16 that is associated with autism are likely to have developmental delays, be obese or both, according to two studies published last week in Nature.

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News

Tuberous sclerosis linked to brain cell migration

by  /  8 February 2010

The TSC2 gene, mutations in which cause tuberous sclerosis complex, is needed for budding nerve fibers to find their proper targets in the brain, according to a mouse study published in Nature Neuroscience.

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News

Variants in trust hormone receptor up the risk for autism

by  /  1 February 2010

Genetic variations that tweak the brain’s release of oxytocin — a hormone involved in social bonding and establishing trust — may increase the risk of developing autism or traits of the disorder, according to three new studies published in the past few months.

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News / Toolbox

Super-cool synapses

by  /  1 February 2010

A chilling new technique shows the intricate and coordinated activity of previously mysterious pieces of the synapse, the all-important junction between neurons that allows cells to talk to each other.

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January 2010
News / Profiles

Guoping Feng: Unearthing the roots of compulsive behavior

by  /  4 January 2010

Guoping Feng’s perseverance has proven a boon to the hundreds of neuroscientists who rely on his most celebrated scientific achievement: two dozen mouse strains engineered to have brightly colored brain cells. By creating the first robust mouse model of obsessive-compulsive disorder, Feng has also found a way to study repetitive behaviors, one of the three core characteristics of autism.

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