Deleting CYFIP1, a gene within a region linked to Angelman syndrome and autism, in mice leads to symptoms reminiscent of fragile X syndrome, according to a study published 10 August in PLoS One.
Spectrum: Autism Research News
Efforts to ease the symptoms of autism are beginning to ramp up, with promising candidates in various stages of testing.
As the central organ regulating maternal-fetal interactions, the placenta is perfectly positioned to mediate environmental and genetic risk factors during prenatal development. It may also relay risk factors for autism to the fetus, says Paul Patterson.
The anti-inflammatory drug celecoxib, sometimes marketed as Celebrex, improves the effectiveness of risperidone for treating irritability in people with autism, according to a study published 11 July in Psychopharmacology.
A drug called arbaclofen improves behavioral problems in people with fragile X syndrome, an inherited condition that can lead to mental retardation and autism, according to the results of a clinical trial published today in Science Translational Medicine. A second study published in the same journal showed that the drug restores normal brain function in a mouse model of the disorder.
Mice that lack the autism-linked gene neuroligin-3 show similar deficits in neuronal connections to those seen in fragile X syndrome, an inherited form of mental retardation, according to research published 13 September in Science. Restoring the gene in adolescent mice reverses the problem, suggesting a potential pathway for treatment.
MeCP2, the gene mutated in people with Rett syndrome, may regulate rates of RNA production in developing neurons, according to a study published 3 August in Stem Cells.