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Spectrum: Autism Research News

Tag: language

February 2022
Woman going over homework with distracted child.

Early language loss in autistic children not tied to later communication problems

by  /  28 February 2022

Many autistic children experience language regression for about three months in early childhood, but this lapse does not appear to foretell future communication issues.

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December 2021

Birdsong-related DNA sequences tied to autism-linked genes

by  /  6 December 2021

Genes that appear to play a role in some birds’ ability to learn songs are frequently mutated in autistic people.

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November 2021

Remembering child psychiatrist Michael Rutter

by  /  1 November 2021

Sir Michael Rutter, widely hailed as the ‘father of child psychiatry,’ was part of the team that first showed autism has a genetic component. He died 23 October at age 88.

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September 2021
Mother and child playing with small colored blocks on the carpet.

Uncertainty clouds test of ‘preemptive’ therapy to ease autism traits

by  /  24 September 2021

Experts question data showing that an experimental therapy that parents deliver to babies with early signs of autism can lessen the intensity of the children’s traits and lower their chances of diagnosis at age 3.

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Many people in different areas on a target.

Finding a path forward for fragile X drugs

by  /  23 September 2021

The stubborn lack of treatments for fragile X syndrome — a leading cause of inherited intellectual disability and autism — is spurring researchers to revise clinical trial techniques and revisit old drug candidates.

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researcher holds zebrafinch

Fish, frogs, flies and other fauna in scientific firsts

by  /  8 September 2021

Over the past century, scientists have used a variety of animal models to advance their understanding of the developing brain and autism.

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A lighthearted, colorful, chaotic lab scene with fruit flies, worms peeking out of petri dishes, zebrafish in beakers and an octopus creeping out of a cabinet..

Special report: Unusual animal models of autism

by  /  8 September 2021

In the past two decades, some autism researchers have turned to simple animals, such as roundworms, fruit flies and zebrafish, for their investigations. Others have sought answers from experiments with frogs, birds and even octopuses.

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Colorful illustration shows a boy talking and a bird singing, with the sounds merging between them.

Tuning into bird songs for clues to autism

by  /  8 September 2021

Parallels between how birds learn to sing and how children learn to speak provide a window into the roots of language difficulties in autism.

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July 2021
Illustration shows a woman whose mouth is covered by a cloud and whos eyes are covered by a cloud.

Double empathy, explained

by  /  22 July 2021

The double empathy theory challenges the idea that social difficulties are specific to autism and suggests that problems arise from a mismatch in perspective between autistic and non-autistic people.

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Illustration shows yellow landscape with blue sections and a lot of trains on paths with kids on the trains, going different directions.

Mapping the futures of autistic children

by  /  14 July 2021

Researchers can roughly project what autistic children’s lives will look like years down the road. But how good is their crystal ball — and what are its benefits?

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