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Tag Archives | Autism

Research Director David Amaral and Assistant Professor Christine Wu Nordahl

Boys With Regressive Autism, But Not Early Onset Autism, Have Larger Brains Than Age-Matched Healthy Counterparts

In the largest study of brain development in preschoolers with autism to date, a study by UC Davis MIND Institute researchers has found that 3-year-old boys with regressive autism, but not early onset autism, have larger brains than their healthy counterparts. The study is published online today in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Early Edition.

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Small, Preliminary Study Finds Abnormal Number Of Neurons In Brains Of Children With Autism

In a small, preliminary study that included 13 male children, those with autism had an average 67 percent more prefrontal brain neurons and larger than average brain weight, than children without autism, according to a study in the November 9 issue of JAMA. The study was carried out by Eric Courchesne, Ph.D., of the NIH-UCSD School of Medicine Autism Center of Excellence, La Jolla, Calif., and colleagues.

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Wide Variation In Best-Estimate Clinical Diagnosis Of Autism Spectrum Disorders

In a study conducted at 12 university-based research sites, there was wide variation in how best-estimate clinical diagnoses within the autism spectrum were assigned to individual children, according to a study being published Online First by the Archives of General Psychiatry, one of the JAMA/Archives journals. The research was carried out by Catherine Lord, Ph.D., of Weill Cornell Medical College, White Plains, New York, and colleagues.

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Researchers Characterize Epigenetic Signatures Of Autism In Brain Tissue

Neurons in the prefrontal cortex of individuals with autism show changes at numerous sites across the genome, according to a study being published Online First by the Archives of General Psychiatry, one of the JAMA/Archives journals. The study was carried out by Hennady P. Shulha, Ph.D., of the University of Massachusetts Medical School, Worcester, Mass., and colleagues.

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Researcher Laurent Mottron

Researcher Urges Scientists To Stop Emphasizing The Shortcomings Of People With Autism

We must stop considering the different brain structure of autistic individuals to be a deficiency, as research reveals that many autistic people – not just “savants” – have qualities and abilities that may exceed those of people who do not have the condition, according to a provocative article published today in Nature by Dr. Laurent Mottron at the University of Montreal’s Centre for Excellence in Pervasive Development Disorders.

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prescription medication bottle

Antidepressant Medication Linked To Developmental Brain Abnormalities And Autistic-Like Behaviors In Animal Study

A study by researchers at the University of Mississippi Medical Center (UMMC) and the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) shows that rats given a popularly prescribed antidepressant during development exhibit brain abnormalities and behaviors characteristic of autism spectrum disorders. The findings suggest that taking a certain class of antidepressants known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors – SSRIs – during pregnancy might be one factor contributing to a dramatic rise in these developmental disorders in children.

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Autistic Brains Develop More Slowly Than Healthy Brains

Researchers at UCLA have found a possible explanation for why autistic children act and think differently than their peers. For the first time, they have shown that the connections between brain regions that are important for language and social skills grow much more slowly in boys with autism than in non-autistic children. Included in this report is a video time lapse comparison of normal brain versus autistic brain development.

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Genetic Variant And Auto-Antibodies Linked To Having A Child With Autism

A study by researchers at UC Davis has found that pregnant women with a particular gene variation are more likely to produce autoantibodies to the brains of their developing fetuses and that the children of these mothers are at greater risk of later being diagnosed with autism. The finding is the first to demonstrate a genetic mechanism at play in the development of the neurodevelopmental disorder among some children – offering the possibility of a genetic test for some women at risk for having a child with autism, said Judy Van de Water, an immunologist and the study’s co-principal investigator.

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