Skip to main content

Spectrum: Autism Research News

topic /

Genes

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

September 2020
Neurons in a macaque cortex express parvalbumin in red.

Virus-based method manipulates inhibitory neurons in brains

by  /  9 September 2020

A new viral tool can selectively control different types of neurons that dampen brain activity in rodents, monkeys and people.

0 Comments
Zebrafish embryos with various deformities.

CRISPR technique knocks down gene expression in animal embryos

by  /  2 September 2020

A new method that suppresses gene expression in the embryos of fish and mice may help researchers study autism genes in early development.

0 Comments
August 2020
Two mice side-by-side.

Drug improves social behaviors, oxytocin signaling in autism mouse model

by  /  31 August 2020

Mice missing the autism gene NLGN3 have altered social behaviors and brain responses to the hormone oxytocin, both of which improve after treatment with a drug that helps regulate protein production.

0 Comments
Series of micrographs showing neurons with Rett syndrome mutations lacking liquid compartments around DNA.

DNA droplets may be key to Rett syndrome, researchers say

by  /  27 August 2020

Mutations in the MECP2 gene, which are associated with autism and Rett syndrome, interfere with a cell’s ability to form droplets of DNA that silence gene expression.

0 Comments
Proteins binding to RNA, illustration.

Massive encyclopedia catalogs genome’s regulatory regions

by  /  26 August 2020

The most comprehensive catalog to date of DNA regions that modify gene expression is helping researchers uncover the role these segments play in autism.

0 Comments
RNA, transcription

Antidote to ‘poison’ DNA may treat lethal form of epilepsy

by  /  26 August 2020

An experimental drug silences a DNA segment and seems to prevent seizures and death in a condition related to autism.

0 Comments
Fat in bloodstream visualized as yellow balls, floating near blood cells, macro view.

Blood lipid levels may be altered in some autistic people

by  /  10 August 2020

About 6.5 percent of autistic people in the United States also have dyslipidemia, a condition characterized by abnormal lipids levels in the blood.

0 Comments
Genetic test showing repeats in DNA.

Probe of DNA ‘repeats’ reveals new potential autism genes

by  /  10 August 2020

Repeating bits of the genome may be responsible for nearly 3 percent of the genetic architecture of autism.

0 Comments
Young child on her bed looking at a book.

Studies unravel diversity of traits tied to chromosome 16 mutations

by  /  3 August 2020

Two new analyses help to explain why mutations to the chromosomal region 16p11.2 can lead to autism, intellectual disability or language difficulties.

0 Comments
July 2020
micrograph of a slice of mouse brain

Autism genes may play key role in development of amygdala

by  /  27 July 2020

Nearly all genes with moderate to strong ties to autism are expressed in the developing amygdala; a few show altered expression in the amygdalae of autistic people.

0 Comments