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Spectrum: Autism Research News

News Archive

February 2008

Brain growth could be early sign of autism

by  /  11 February 2008

As many as one in every three people with autism develop a macrocephalus, or extremely enlarged head, at some point in their lives, an observation largely accepted as fact. But how or why this happens ― and whether it happens consistently enough to be useful in diagnosing autism ― remains contentious.

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MEG imaging simplifies mapping of autistic brains

by  /  4 February 2008

Imagine being confined for at least half an hour to a dark, claustrophobic tunnel, in a machine so obnoxiously loud that it sounds like you’re in an oil drum with a jackhammer pounding on the outside. Thatʼs whatʼs involved in magnetic resonance imaging (MRI): an experience enough to make even the bravest among us flinch.

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January 2008

Genes link autism and immunity

by  /  30 January 2008

A new genetic study is lending support to the notion that immune system abnormalities and some forms of autism go hand in hand.

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Changes in chromosome 16 firmly linked to autism

by  /  9 January 2008

In a paper published today in The New England Journal of Medicine, researchers have identified a segment containing 25 genes on chromosome 16 that was deleted or duplicated in roughly one percent of children with autism.

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Fragile X symptoms reversed in mice

by  /  3 January 2008

Fragile X syndrome is a rare and devastating condition, and a risk factor for autism. New research suggesting the condition is reversible in mice has some wondering whether treatments for the syndrome ― and for some forms of autism ― could be on the horizon.

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December 2007

Interpreting gray matter studies not black and white

by  /  18 December 2007

Gray matter, that mysterious brain substance, is thought to control everything from motor function to mental acuity. In recent years several studies have suggested that an excess of gray matter during childhood is to blame for the symptoms of autism.

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‘Brainbow’ lights up nerve cell connections

by  /  8 December 2007

A new ‘dyeʼ called Brainbow turns drab neurons in mouse brains into multi-colored impressionistic masterpieces.

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Maternal flu linked to autism

by  /  7 December 2007

Having the flu during pregnancy can be unpleasant and exhausting. But can it affect fetal brain development and cause autism-like disorders? Intriguing new research says yes ― at least in mice.

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