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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.

April 2013
Picture of a brain brightly painted with layer upon layer of information, mapping out different types of neurons and their interrelated networks.

New technique clears way for glimpse into brain

by  /  10 April 2013

A new method that renders the brain transparent generates unprecedented views of long-range neuronal connections, researchers reported 10 April in Nature.


Video game device detects repetitive behavior

by  /  10 April 2013

Researchers have adapted a motion-sensing video game controller to detect repetitive movements that are characteristic of autism, according to a preliminary study published in the 2012 Conference Proceedings – IEEE Engineering Medical Biological Society.


What about the other 97 percent?

by  /  8 April 2013

Exome sequencing has produced a wealth of insight into the heritability of autism and identified a number of promising risk genes. But how much risk lies outside the exome?


Matthew Goodwin: Bridging disciplines for autism care

by  /  8 April 2013

Matthew Goodwin aims to use wearable sensors and computational techniques to help scientists understand hand flapping and other behaviors in children with autism.


Slicing the genetic pie

by ,  /  5 April 2013

Jason Stein and Daniel Geschwind analyze how different types of genetic variation contribute to autism risk.


Study clarifies link between 15q duplication and autism

by  /  4 April 2013

Children who carry an extra copy of the 15q11-13 region of the genome usually have autism and sleep troubles, as well as distinctive brain-wave patterns and facial features, according to a report published 14 March in Autism Research.


Can you Google your way to a hypothesis?

by  /  1 April 2013

In his Directors’ Column, Alan Packer points out how a number of autism risk genes act on a common cellular pathway regulated by a single protein. What other similar convergent paths might be hiding in the literature? Let’s go on a treasure hunt.

March 2013
Photo of a group of adults sitting and talking.

Adult advancement

by  /  29 March 2013

Adults with autism fare better now than they did in the 1960s, when scientists first began tracking outcomes, reports a perspective published in February’s World Psychiatry.


Online tool sketches, traces and analyzes neurons

by  /  27 March 2013

Show an image of a neuron to NEMO, a new free software tool, and it will trace the neuron’s shape and detail the length, breadth and number of its branches, scientists who designed the software reported 14 February in Frontiers in Neuroinformatics.


Fixing motion

by  /  22 March 2013

New methods to deal with motion artifacts in brain imaging data are critically important, says Mike Tyszka.