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Spectrum: Autism Research News

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Genes

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

November 2019
Boy staring at fidget spinner

Risk genes for autism overlap with those for attention deficit

by  /  25 November 2019

People with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder may carry certain rare, harmful mutations in many of the same genes as people with autism.

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High-frequency sound waves locate cells in deep tissues

by  /  22 November 2019

A new technique uses ultrasound instead of light to detect gene expression in cells.

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Mouse study reveals overlooked target for autism therapies

by  /  20 November 2019

Blocking one form of an enzyme implicated in autism eases unusual behaviors and seizures in mice missing a top autism gene.

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Strand of DNA with bases being deleted

Autism-linked gene variants increase odds of attention deficit

by  /  18 November 2019

A collection of rare genetic variants associated with autism and schizophrenia also seem to increase a person’s odds of having attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.

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Close-up of child's hand on wet window

Mutations in cancer gene tied to unique autism traits

by  /  14 November 2019

Autistic people who carry mutations in a gene called PTEN have distinct behavioral and motor problems.

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Chromosomes swapping DNA

CRISPR technique tracks genetic activity in real time

by  /  8 November 2019

A new method scans gene expression in live cells and could help scientists study autism genes.

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October 2019
blood in a medical vial, closeup

Molecular signature may lead to blood test for autism

by  /  31 October 2019

Researchers have identified a distinctive pattern of gene expression in the white blood cells of young autistic boys.

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four panels show mouse neurons showing abnormalities

New gene linked to autism, neuron development

by  /  30 October 2019

Mutations in the gene CSDE1 lead to a constellation of developmental delays and conditions, including autism, according to a new study.

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Mitochondrion, coloured transmission electron micrograph (TEM). Mitochondria are a type of organelle found in the cytoplasm of eukaryotic cells. They oxidise sugars and fats to produce energy in a process called respiration. A mitochondrion has two membranes, a smooth outer membrane and a folded inner membrane. The folds of the inner membrane are called cristae, and it is here that the chemical reactions to produce energy take place. Magnification: x62,800 when printed at 10 centimetres wide.

Leaky mitochondria may play central role in fragile X syndrome

by  /  23 October 2019

Some traits of fragile X syndrome may be due to problems with mitochondria, the cell’s energy factories.

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UBE3A

Rat model mimics communication problems in Angelman syndrome

by  /  23 October 2019

Rats missing UBE3A, the gene mutated in people with Angelman syndrome, squeak frequently but tend not to be responsive to the play and squeaks of other rats.

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