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Science & Society

From funding decisions to scientific fraud, a wide range of societal factors shape autism research.

March 2012
News

Clinical trials for autism treatments go online

by  /  8 March 2012

A new clinical trial, conducted entirely online, could provide a model for how to quickly and efficiently test some potential treatments for autism.

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News

Genetics: Maternal and paternal age increase risk of autism

by  /  6 March 2012

The odds of having a child with autism begin to rise at age 35 for both men and women, but that risk does not increase further when both parents are over 35, according to a large study published in the March issue of Annals of Epidemiology.

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February 2012
News / Toolbox

MRI devices for children reduce head motion in scanner

by  /  29 February 2012

Researchers have developed functional magnetic imaging devices that are optimized to fit children’s heads, according to a study published in the December issue of Magnetic Resonance in Medicine. These tools increase the quality of the data and deter head motion, which research suggests can lead to spurious results.

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News

Clinical research: Autism genes linked to autoimmune disease

by  /  29 February 2012

The genetic risk factors for autism may also increase a person’s risk of developing ankylosing spondylitis, a form of arthritis of the spine, and decrease the risk of multiple sclerosis, according to a study published 13 December in Translational Psychiatry.

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Opinion / Reviews

Documentary review: ‘Le Mur’ (‘The Wall’)

by  /  28 February 2012

The French documentary Le Mur (The Wall) shows that many psychoanalysts in France shun biological explanations for autism.

5 Comments
News

Cognition and behavior: Contaminant acts with autism gene

by  /  28 February 2012

A commonly used flame retardant may lead to deficits in sociability, learning and memory in healthy female mice and those that model Rett syndrome, according to a study published 15 February in Human Molecular Genetics. The effects are different in Rett syndrome models compared with healthy mice, suggesting gene-environment interactions.

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Opinion

Music reigns

by  /  21 February 2012

Brain imaging studies of people with autism show that specific areas respond more strongly to song than do those of controls. The opposite is true when listening to speech.

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Opinion

Robot renaissance

by  /  17 February 2012

Engineers have debuted several new robots to help children with autism, including a boy that can sense when it’s touched, a female head that expresses a wide range of emotions and a low-cost fuzzy penguin that can track a child’s eye movements.

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News

Human neuron model tests function of autism-linked genes

by  /  16 February 2012

Simulating neuronal development in culture with cells derived from human brain tissue offers a new way to study the function of autism-linked genes, according to research published in the February issue of Molecular Psychiatry.

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News

Genetics: Autism, Tourette syndrome genes overlap

by  /  15 February 2012

Genes implicated in Tourette syndrome overlap with those involved in autism, according to an analysis of rare DNA duplications and deletions in people with the syndrome, published in the March issue of Biological Psychiatry.

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