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Spectrum: Autism Research News

Tag: sequencing

August 2015

Control centers for genes rife with autism-linked DNA blips

by  /  3 August 2015

DNA sequences called enhancers — which boost the expression of genes from within or outside them — are enriched for genetic variants linked to autism, suggests a new study. The finding may help researchers understand how variants outside genes contribute to autism.

July 2015

Method improves analysis of chemical tags that control genes

by  /  8 July 2015

A new strategy sharpens the analysis of chemical tags on the DNA-protein complexes that regulate gene expression. The method may help researchers decipher how gene expression goes awry in disorders such as autism.

Week of JuneJun

Spotted: Sticking point; embryo ethics

by  /  3 July 2015

California might make vaccines mandatory, and religious figures may weigh in on the genetic engineering of embryos.

June 2015
Week of JuneJun

Spotted: Rebranding oxytocin; marsupial madness

by  /  26 June 2015

The ‘love hormone’ oxytocin needs a scientific makeover, and left-handed kangaroos don’t have autism.

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Body clock genes may set pace for sleep issues in autism

by  /  19 June 2015

People with autism are twice as likely to carry alterations in genes that regulate the circadian clock, or the body’s sleep-wake cycle as those without the disorder. The findings may help explain why most children with autism have trouble with sleep.


Startled fish help sound out sensory overload in autism

by  /  8 June 2015

There is some evidence that neural habituation — the process by which neurons get used to sensory stimuli — goes awry in autism. Mutant fish may help us understand the sensory sensitivities that often accompany the disorder, says Alan Packer.


Online atlas unravels gene activity in diverse tissues

by  /  3 June 2015

A new resource reveals that gene expression varies more across tissues in one person than it does in the same tissue type among individuals. The findings, described 8 May in Science, indicate that the brain’s gene expression signature is unique.


Boys with autism inherit mutations from unaffected mothers

by  /  1 June 2015

Rare inherited mutations may contribute to autism in roughly 10 percent of boys with the disorder, according to a study published 11 May in Nature Genetics. These genetic glitches are primarily passed down from unaffected mothers.

May 2015

Sex differences take center stage in autism special issue

by  /  29 May 2015

One of the most consistent findings in autism, and perhaps the most perplexing, is that it affects about four boys for every girl. This gender bias has become a hot topic in autism research — so much so that Molecular Autism devoted its entire May issue to it.


Technique decodes gene sequence and activity in single cells

by  /  27 May 2015

A new method simultaneously reveals a single cell’s DNA sequence and which of its genes are turned on.