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Spectrum: Autism Research News

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Science & Society

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

November 2021
Clinician sitting with young boy looking at drawings together.

Age at autism diagnosis, first intervention drops to under 3 years

by  /  19 November 2021

Autism diagnoses in the United States now precede developmental services and interventions, according to a new study.


By the Numbers: Black neuroscience speakers, mildly effective CBT, autism’s diagnostic odyssey

by ,  /  19 November 2021

This edition of By the Numbers logs the continued underrepresentation of Black speakers at neuroscience meetings, mildly-effective cognitive behavioral therapy and early autism diagnoses.


Cognitive behavioral therapy may be only mildly effective for anxious, autistic children

by  /  16 November 2021

Many autistic children rate the therapy as less effective at treating their anxiety than their parents and clinicians do.

Speech bubble formed by a network of communication

Community Newsletter: Autistic researcher strengths, challenging the medical research model

by  /  14 November 2021

In this week’s Community Newsletter, we dive into two studies that look at how the autism research paradigm could become more inclusive.

Week of NovemberNov

Spotted around the web: Antisense therapies, mosaic mutations, researcher productivity

by  /  12 November 2021

Here is a roundup of news and research for the week of 8 November.

Illustration shows a road going into the distance, seen from the driver's point of view.

Spectrum Launch: Slack time, job searches, pandemic mentoring

by  /  11 November 2021

An online community is helping many new principal investigators through a tricky time, plus other resources for early-career autism researchers.

No signal error screen.

Technical issues force SfN presenters to improvise

by  /  10 November 2021

Technical issues have plagued the 2021 Society for Neuroscience annual meeting, with presenters unable to log in for their virtual poster sessions and battling auto-captioning quirks.

Illustration of a network of blue neurons overlaid with marijuana leaves.

Special report: How cannabis could shape future autism therapies

by  /  8 November 2021

Cannabis-derived drugs are approved to treat only a small number of autism-related conditions, but many autistic people and their families experiment with medical marijuana to ease autism traits. In this special report, Spectrum rounds up what the science says about cannabis and autism.


Despite calls to action, Black scientists remain underrepresented at neuroscience meetings

by  /  8 November 2021

The percentage of Black researchers presenting at neuroscience conferences has increased by only a meager amount since the Black Lives Matter protests of 2020.

Many mouths making conversation, with speech bubbles in red and blue.

Community Newsletter: Researchers and advocates debate applied behavior analysis

by  /  7 November 2021

In this week’s Community Newsletter, we detail the online conversations swirling around the Autism Science Foundation’s statement of support for applied behavior analysis.