TOPIC

The Brain

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

December 2019
a young girl has her height measured by a woman
News

Top autism gene tied to unusual skull, skeletal growth

by  /  12 December 2019

People with mutations in CHD8, a top autism gene, tend to be tall and have large heads.

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Illustration shows fetus with molecules interacting inside the mother's belly
Opinion / Viewpoint

In defense of sex steroids’ role in autism

by ,  /  12 December 2019

Multiple independent studies are revealing evidence suggesting that sex steroids are important in autism.

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A single ecstasy pill on a blue background.
News

Distinct brain pathway underlies ecstasy’s social effects

by  /  11 December 2019

The drug popularly known as ecstasy may boost sociability through brain circuits distinct from that underlying its ‘high.’

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Mouse sniffing the air
News

Mice with autism mutation may be indifferent to social scents

by  /  5 December 2019

Neurons in mice that lack an autism gene called CNTNAP2 do not differentiate well between social and nonsocial smells — an issue that seems to stem from haphazard neuronal firing.

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Two sides of a 3D human brain showing different areas highlighted in various colors
News

Brains of autistic people show unusual left-right symmetry

by  /  4 December 2019

The hemispheres in autistic people’s brains are more symmetrical than those of their typical peers, but it is unclear what this difference means.

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November 2019
News / Toolbox

Study links large set of common genes to brain structure

by  /  29 November 2019

A new analysis of nearly 40,000 people pinpoints 48 genetic variants that may determine the volume of certain brain areas.

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Micrograph of mouse brain showing transplanted human microglia
News / Toolbox

Chimeric mouse model aids study of brain’s immune cells

by  /  15 November 2019

A new technique allows researchers to transplant human microglia into mouse brains and better study the association between these cells and autism.

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micrographs of blood vessels in the brain
News

Surplus of immune cells may mark brains of autistic people

by  /  11 November 2019

Blood vessels in the brains of more than half of autistic people have an unusually large number of T cells.

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Neurons in zebrafish spinal motor circuit
News / Toolbox

New technique follows single neurons from birth to brain circuit

by  /  1 November 2019

A new technique lets researchers watch brain circuits as they’re being built, starting from the individual neurons birth.

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October 2019
Neurons inside mouse brain are highlighted in a 3D view
News / Toolbox

New database tracks more than a thousand mouse neurons

by  /  25 October 2019

A new resource that traces individual neurons in the mouse brain may reveal how distant brain regions communicate.

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