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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.

October 2019
Two dark brown research mice

Mice with autism mutation reflect social difficulties seen in people

by  /  21 October 2019

A new autism mouse model carries the same mutation in a gene called ADNP that is seen in autistic people.

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DNA

Rapid assay flags autism mutations in regions that flank genes

by  /  21 October 2019

Researchers have identified mutations within regulatory regions that are likely to contribute to autism, using a speedy system of DNA ‘barcodes.’

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Maternal infection may accelerate expression of autism genes

by  /  21 October 2019

Exposure to infection in utero may speed up the expression of many genes linked to autism — and hasten changes in brain anatomy.

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Neurons in a mouse brain are highlighted green and yellow

Autism gene’s loss hampers neurons’ trek through developing brain

by  /  21 October 2019

Deleting an autism gene called TRIO derails neurons’ journey to their destination.

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Unusual gait marks mice with mutations related to autism

by  /  20 October 2019

Mouse models of two genetic conditions related to autism show abnormalities in their movement patterns.

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Transplanted neurons rescue social behavior but not brain circuits

by  /  20 October 2019

Injecting cells called interneurons into the brains of a mouse model of autism restores typical social behavior. But the reason for this effect is a puzzle.

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CRISPR therapy may reverse autism mutation’s effects well past infancy

by  /  20 October 2019

Injecting the gene-editing tool CRISPR into the brains of mice may reverse the effects of an autism mutation at any age.

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Breaks in long genes may underpin some forms of autism

by  /  20 October 2019

Neurons derived from autistic people with enlarged brains show extensive damage to long genes.

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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.

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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