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The Brain

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

May 2020
brain shown in four distinct, colorful layers
News

New mapping technique reveals unexpected brain cell diversity

by  /  13 May 2020

Star-shaped cells called astrocytes may play a greater role in brain development than previously thought.

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Human brain with prefrontal cortex highlighted.
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DNA differences may shape gene expression in the brain before birth

by  /  7 May 2020

Many genes in a brain region implicated in autism change expression patterns in late fetal development, depending on differences in neighboring DNA.

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Close up view of human eye.
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Autistic people may have trouble tuning out distractions

by  /  4 May 2020

Pupil response suggests autistic people have atypical activity in a part of the brain that regulates attention.

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April 2020
Two neuron images compared side by side
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Lithium may treat behavior linked to autism gene

by  /  24 April 2020

The mood-stabilizing drug lithium seems to ease repetitive behaviors seen in mice missing SHANK3, an autism gene.

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New atlas maps gene expression throughout the brain

by  /  22 April 2020

A comprehensive atlas of gene expression by brain region could spur new research on autism.

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Baby looking up at father's face.
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Siblings of children with autism may process faces their own way

by  /  16 April 2020

Children who have autistic older siblings have bigger neural responses than controls do in the brain networks that process faces.

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four brain views, seen from the side.
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Brain anatomy differences in autism may vary by age, sex

by  /  13 April 2020

Several regions in the outer layer of the brain are thicker in children and young adults with autism than in their typical peers.

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Side view of the human brain, area highlighted at the back of brain is activated by visual stimuli.
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Visual, sensory brain regions in autistic children may have weak links

by  /  6 April 2020

Areas of the brain involved in processing vision are more weakly connected to those that process sensory information in autistic children than in controls.

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March 2020
multiple brain scans showing brain activity during different tasks. Purple background and brains in pink, red and green tones indicate activity.
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New analysis of brain activity could identify signal for autism

by  /  18 March 2020

A new technique allows researchers to analyze raw data across multiple studies that use electroencephalography.

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‘Social brain’ activity may not differ in some autistic people

by  /  16 March 2020

People with autism may have patterns of brain activity that are similar to those in typical people when interpreting social interactions.

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