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Treatments

Efforts to ease the symptoms of autism are beginning to ramp up, with promising candidates in various stages of testing.

August 2021
Jeremy Veenstra-VanderWeele headshot
Multimedia / Webinars

Webinar: Jeremy Veenstra-VanderWeele on the state of autism drug development

28 September 2021

On 28 September, Jeremy Veenstra-VanderWeele, professor of psychiatry at Columbia University, spoke about goals for developing new drugs for autism — and the barriers researchers may encounter.

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News

Drugs boost serotonin, socialization in multiple autism mouse models

by  /  6 August 2021

The finding that MDMA and an experimental serotonin agonist increase sociability across six different model mice suggests that disparate autism-linked mutations converge on the same underlying pathways.

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Portrait of the Lane family in Kentucky.
Features / Deep Dive

Moving for autism care

by  /  4 August 2021

Disparities in state services for autism are driving families to relocate. But not everyone can afford to move, and others find that their new home also has faults.

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July 2021
Micrographs comparing motor cortex neurons in mice with and without an extra copy of MECP2 gene.
News

Blocking key pathway reverses brain, behavior changes in autism mouse model

by  /  19 July 2021

Neurons in mice with an autism-linked mutation sprout extraneous protrusions, an overgrowth accompanied by above-average motor learning. Inhibiting a cell signaling pathway reverses the effect.

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News

Polypharmacy, shifting prescriptions common for autism comorbidities

by  /  1 July 2021

Roughly 30 percent of people with autism plus another condition, such as anxiety, are prescribed three or more psychotropic medicines. And that mix frequently changes from year to year.

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June 2021
Dr. Huda Zoghbi portrait
News / Profiles

Huda Zoghbi: Taking genetic inquiry to the next level

by  /  25 June 2021

Over the course of a career spanning more than three decades, Huda Zoghbi has won almost every major biology and neuroscience research award that exists. More than 20 years since she discovered the gene behind Rett syndrome, she remains laser focused on unlocking the condition’s secrets and finding effective treatments.

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Micrographs of mouse astrocytes with high levels of inflammatory molecules.
News

Immune-regulating cells contribute to autism-like traits in mice

by  /  21 June 2021

The link between autism and prenatal exposure to an immune response may involve altered levels of immune cells, according to a new study.

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lab technician pipetting in dramatic light
News

Alternative gene-therapy approaches take aim at Rett syndrome

by  /  16 June 2021

Methods that selectively increase levels of the Rett protein make for safer and more effective treatment strategies, some researchers say.

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Brain and marijuana leaves
Opinion / Q&A

Q&A with Eric Hollander: Cannabis treatments for autism

by  /  8 June 2021

As cannabis prohibition slowly lifts in the United States, scientists and families in the autism community are increasingly turning to the drug and its constituent compounds to ease autism-related difficulties, including seizures and irritability.

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News

Enzyme blockers may counteract excess protein levels in fragile X syndrome

by  /  7 June 2021

Investigational drugs that inhibit an overactive enzyme could partially normalize how brain cells mature in boys with fragile X syndrome.

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