Inhibiting the ERK1/2 pathway — which regulates the synthesis of other proteins — can rescue some of the effects of fragile X syndrome, according to a study published 17 November in the Journal of Neuroscience. The ERK pathway could provide a novel target for fragile X therapies.
Spectrum: Autism Research News
Rare or common, inherited or spontaneous, mutations form the core of autism risk.
Researchers have developed a technique to detect interactions in live neurons between neuroligins and neurexins — two proteins known to bind at the junction between neurons, according to a study published 29 October in Cell.
Hazel Sive is a classically-trained embryologist and developmental biologist, and an expert in zebrafish genetics. She is using the small, transparent fish embryos for research on autism — an odd choice, as they obviously lack the complex behavioral repertoire seen in the disorder.
Areas of the brain that are active when people are daydreaming or sleeping, and quiet when they are engaged in a task, are imperfectly synchronized in people with autism and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, researchers say.
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.
Minocycline, an antibiotic approved to treat various infections including acne, can increase vocalizations and provide long-lasting improvements in anxiety in a fragile X mouse model, according to two posters presented at the Society for Neuroscience annual meeting in San Diego.
Brain cells communicate across complex junctions called synapses, filled with proteins working to bind neurons together. Kurt Haas of the University of British Columbia in Vancouver has developed a method to watch neuron development in the growing tadpole brain.
Deletion of the chromosomal region 17q12 dramatically increases the risk for autism and schizophrenia, according to a large study published last week in the American Journal of Human Genetics. Individuals missing this sizeable region are about 14 times more likely to develop one of those disorders, the study reports.
Lowering the levels of proteins associated with Alzheimer’s disease can improve symptoms of fragile X syndrome in mice, according to a poster presented Wednesday at the Society for Neuroscience annual meeting in San Diego.