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Spectrum: Autism Research News

Tag: mouse models

May 2021
Mouse gut cells in blue, purple and pink

Loss of top autism-linked gene from gut alters behavior in mice

by  /  4 May 2021

Deleting CHD8 from the intestines induces gastrointestinal and behavioral changes in mice that resemble traits in people with mutations in the gene.

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April 2021
Two views of mouse brain slices colorized in green and red.

Jump-starting growth signaling reverses microcephaly in autism mouse model

by  /  29 April 2021

A genetic therapy and an existing drug both restore typical brain size in mice missing DYRK1A, a top autism candidate gene, in the cerebral cortex, a new study shows. The animals typically have smaller brains than controls.

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Female mouse with its litter of pups.

Few autism researchers control for the ‘litter effect’ — this needs to change

by ,  /  27 April 2021

Anyone who uses multiple animals from a small number of litters to increase sample size is making a serious mistake. The similarities within individual litters will heavily skew the results.

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Loss of CHD8 from cerebellum disrupts movements, not social behaviors

by  /  26 April 2021

Deleting the autism-linked gene CHD8 from specific cells in the cerebellum, a brain region important for movement, leads to motor deficits but does not alter social behaviors in mice.

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VItamin and probiotic supplements float in space with food colored pink and green on black

The gut’s connection to autism

by  /  21 April 2021

Autistic children are up to four times as likely as their non-autistic peers to have digestive problems, and several small studies show they may also have atypical microbial communities living in their guts.

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Mouse brains carrying CUL3 gene mutation reveal unusually thin cortical tissue.

Neuron ‘skeleton’ may explain impact of autism-linked gene mutation

by  /  16 April 2021

Mutations in CUL3, a gene strongly linked to autism, may cause differences in brain structure by disrupting cytoskeleton proteins, according to a new study.

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Baby in utero surrounded by pills, on bright blue background

The link between vitamins, supplements and autism, explained

by  /  14 April 2021

Too little — or too much — of certain substances during pregnancy may increase the odds of having a child with autism. Here we explain what scientists know about these associations.

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Micrograph comparing locus coeruleus of 16p11.2 mutant mice and control mice show less active noradrenergic neurons in mutant mice.

Circuit flaw underlies motor learning issues in autism mouse model

by  /  12 April 2021

Mice missing a copy of chromosomal region 16p11.2 are slow to learn motor tasks and have dysfunction in a brain circuit associated with stress and movement, according to a new study. Normalizing this circuit’s activity corrects the learning deficit.

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Atlas maps distinct cell types during earliest stages of brain development

by  /  1 April 2021

A new atlas profiles gene activity early on during development in the human fetal brain.

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March 2021
Scanning elecgron micrograph of Faecal bacteria.

Gut microbes shape social behavior in autism mouse model

by  /  26 March 2021

Treating mice missing the autism-linked gene CNTNAP2 with a strain of gut bacteria makes them more social but no less hyperactive.

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