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Spectrum: Autism Research News

Tag: autism

January 2022
Speech bubble formed by a network of communication

Community Newsletter: Post-traumatic stress in older autistic people, Michael Rutter’s legacy

by  /  9 January 2022

In this week’s Community Newsletter, we look at conversations around a study of trauma and autism traits in older adults, and an editorial that looks back at late child psychiatrist Sir Michael Rutter’s contributions to the field.

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Week of JanuaryJan
3rd
2022

Spotted around the web: Gut issues, autism screens, prenatal genetic tests

by  /  7 January 2022

Here is a roundup of news and research for the week of 3 January.

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Cerebral cortex transcript

Alternate RNA versions of genes may shape autism

by  /  7 January 2022

Autism may involve different levels of RNA isoforms encoded by genes in the brain, which express many more proteins than previously thought.

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The connection between oxytocin and autism, explained

by  /  6 January 2022

Oxytocin, cemented in the popular imagination as the “love molecule,” could serve as a treatment for some autistic people who naturally have low levels of the hormone, researchers say.

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New method spotlights synaptic plasticity in living mice

by  /  5 January 2022

Mice that express a fluorescent synaptic receptor reveal the interactions between neurons in unprecedented detail.

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Visual stimulus of 4 circles with black and white stripes.

Visual task flags autistic people who respond to GABA agonists

by  /  5 January 2022

The investigational drug arbaclofen makes autistic people’s brains respond to a visual task more like non-autistic people’s brains do.

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Motor skills in autism: A missed opportunity

by ,  /  4 January 2022

Motor differences are more relevant than has historically been appreciated for understanding, assessing and supporting people on the spectrum.

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Series of micrographs of synapses in stressed mice with mutated SHANK3 gene showing high expression of HOMER1A protein and loss of SHANK3.

Autism-linked gene primes stress vulnerability in mice

by  /  3 January 2022

In mice with a mutated copy of SHANK3, stress induces social deficits and alters gene expression in certain excitatory neurons. But eliminating a stress-related protein that regulates SHANK3 restores typical social functioning in the animals.

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December 2021

Trends in autism research 2021

 /  23 December 2021

As 2021 comes to a close, Spectrum recaps some of the biggest trends in autism science this year: studies of sex differences, noncoding regions of the genome and points of convergence, as well as efforts to improve screening and participatory research.

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Portraits of Cathy Lord and Tony Charman.

Webinar: Tony Charman and Catherine Lord on the Lancet Commission and ‘profound autism’

 /  26 January 2022

On 26 January, Catherine Lord, distinguished professor of psychiatry and education at the University of California, Los Angeles, and Tony Charman, chair of clinical child psychology at King’s College London in the United Kingdom, will speak about the Lancet commission’s recommendations and the use of the term ‘profound autism.’

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