Thought until recently to only coordinate motor skills, the cerebellum is involved in diverse cognitive functions such as language and social interaction, and may play a role in autism, says Emanuel DiCicco-Bloom.
Spectrum: Autism Research News
Treatment with the hormone oxytocin boosts brain activity and improves recognition of emotions in people with autism, according to two small studies published in February.
The ‘intense world theory’ of autism, which has attracted much interest from the popular press, has received very little academic scrutiny. Uta Frith and Anna Remington ask: Is it as positive as it purports to be, and what does it mean for autism?
When exposed to irritating noises or images, children with autism show hypersensitivity in brain regions that process sensory information and emotions, according to a study published in November in the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry.
A subset of neurons in the amygdala is dedicated to recognizing eyes. But in people with autism, they may respond instead to the mouth, according to a report published 20 November in Neuron.
Three decades of research on anatomical changes in the brains of individuals with autism has yielded few if any consistent patterns. The field needs an overhaul of the methods used, researchers said at a symposium Wednesday at the 2013 Society for Neuroscience annual meeting in San Diego.
Pivotal response training, a form of behavioral therapy for autism, alters brain activity in children with the disorder, normalizing it in some regions and triggering compensatory activity in others, according to a small study. The unpublished results were presented Wednesday at the International Meeting for Autism Research in San Sebastián, Spain.