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The Brain

Charting the structure and function of the brain’s many circuits may unravel autism’s mysteries.

May 2021
Visual stimulus of 4 circles with black and white stripes.
News

Visual task flags autistic people who respond to GABA agonists

by  /  14 May 2021

The investigational drug arbaclofen makes autistic people’s brains respond to a visual task more like non-autistic people’s brains do.

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Neurons in green
News / Toolbox

New unified toolbox traces, analyzes neurons

by  /  13 May 2021

‘SNT’ helps researchers sift through microscope images to reconstruct and analyze neurons and their connections.

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Neurons in red and green
News

‘Neurons on a chip’ reveal patterns across autism-linked conditions

by  /  7 May 2021

Activity patterns of neuronal networks link different genetic subtypes of autism that have similar traits, according to new unpublished research.

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News

Fetal brain scans may forecast autism traits in toddlers

by  /  7 May 2021

Children with highly folded and curved brains in utero tend to show autism-linked behaviors at 18 months of age, according to a longitudinal brain-imaging study.

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Brown rat mother and pup in rustic setting with burlap and wheat.
News

Maternal antibodies tied to autism bind to budding rat neurons

by  /  6 May 2021

Certain antibodies may shape neurodevelopment by attaching to and invading new neurons in the brain.

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Woman talks to child in EEG cap
News

Brain’s response to faces foretells social development in autistic people

by  /  6 May 2021

A delayed brain response to viewing faces may predict lags in social-skill development in autistic people.

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brainstem of rats in red, green and blue highlight higher levels of GABA.
News

GABA agonist rescues auditory hypersensitivity in rats missing autism-linked gene CNTNAP2

by  /  3 May 2021

The investigational drug arbaclofen may right an imbalance between inhibitory and excitatory signaling in the animals’ brains.

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News

Anxiety specific to autism linked to amygdala differences

by  /  3 May 2021

People who experience an autism-specific form of anxiety also tend to have an unusually small amygdala, a brain region associated with emotion processing and fear, according to a new unpublished study.

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April 2021
Brain scan showing communication from amygdala to hypothalamus about social reward.
News

Brain circuit makes social interactions rewarding, may be altered in autism

by  /  30 April 2021

Blocking connections between the amygdala and hypothalamus prevents mice from finding social interactions as rewarding as they would otherwise.

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Two views of mouse brain slices colorized in green and red.
News

Jump-starting growth signaling reverses microcephaly in autism mouse model

by  /  29 April 2021

A genetic therapy and an existing drug both restore typical brain size in mice missing DYRK1A, a top autism candidate gene, in the cerebral cortex, a new study shows. The animals typically have smaller brains than controls.

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