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Autism (sometimes called “classical autism”) is the most common condition in a group of developmental disorders known as the autism spectrum disorders (ASDs). Autism is characterized by impaired social interaction, problems with verbal and nonverbal communication, and unusual, repetitive, or severely limited activities and interests. Other ASDs include Asperger syndrome, Rett syndrome, childhood disintegrative disorder, and pervasive developmental disorder not otherwise specified (usually referred to as PDD-NOS). Experts estimate that three to six children out of every 1,000 will have autism. Males are four times more likely to have autism than females.
Researchers identify key molecule that drives excess protein production in Fragile X patients' brain

Researchers identify key molecule that drives excess protein production in Fragile X patients' brain

People affected by a common inherited form of autism could be helped by a drug that is being tested as a treatment for cancer. [More]
Leeds researchers identify gene associated with autism symptoms

Leeds researchers identify gene associated with autism symptoms

Researchers at the University of Leeds have shed light on a gene mutation linked to autistic traits. The team already knew that some people with autism were deficient in a gene called neurexin-II. [More]
Research sheds light on gene mutation linked to autistic traits

Research sheds light on gene mutation linked to autistic traits

Researchers at the University of Leeds have shed light on a gene mutation linked to autistic traits. [More]
Comprehensive guide to help parents obtain quality medical care for children with ASDs

Comprehensive guide to help parents obtain quality medical care for children with ASDs

Navigating through the maze of health and medical services can be challenging for parents of children who have been diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders (ASDs). A new resource is now available for caregivers, health professionals and, especially, parents. [More]
Abnormal connections between neurons cause motor coordination issues in autism

Abnormal connections between neurons cause motor coordination issues in autism

Abnormal connections between neurons are the likely cause of motor coordination issues seen in autism spectrum disorder. Using a mouse model of autism, scientists from the University of Chicago identified a malfunctioning neural circuit associated with reduced capacity for motor learning. This appears to arise from an inability to eliminate unneeded neural connections in the brain. [More]
UMMS scientists awarded $9.5 million grant to study Fragile X syndrome

UMMS scientists awarded $9.5 million grant to study Fragile X syndrome

The National Institutes of Health has awarded a $9.5 million grant to investigators at the University of Massachusetts Medical School to establish a Center for Collaborative Research in Fragile X, one of three centers designated by the NIH. [More]
Study underlines critical role of Fragile X mental retardation protein in brain development

Study underlines critical role of Fragile X mental retardation protein in brain development

Fragile X syndrome (FXS) is the most common cause of inherited intellectual disability (ID), as well as the most frequent monogenic cause of autism spectrum disorders (ASD). FXS is caused by the absence or incorrect production of the protein FMRP (Fragile X Mental Retardation Protein). [More]
Social robots help diabetic children to become more confident about their futures

Social robots help diabetic children to become more confident about their futures

Social robots are helping diabetic children accept the nature of their condition and become more confident about their futures, scientists have announced following a four-and-a-half year research study. [More]
RI-MUHC-led study identifies new player in brain function and memory

RI-MUHC-led study identifies new player in brain function and memory

Is it possible to change the amount of information the brain can store? Maybe, according to a new international study led by the Research Institute of the McGill University Health Centre (RI-MUHC). [More]
New mouse model shows how mutated gene impairs neuronal development in individuals with autism

New mouse model shows how mutated gene impairs neuronal development in individuals with autism

Geneticists at Heidelberg University Hospital's Department of Molecular Human Genetics have used a new mouse model to demonstrate the way a certain genetic mutation is linked to a type of autism in humans and affects brain development and behavior. [More]

Adults with ASD struggle to recognise changing facial expressions

People on the autistic spectrum may struggle to recognise social cues, unfamiliar people or even someone’s gender because of an inability to interpret changing facial expressions, new research has found. [More]
New NIH-funded study aims to find novel way to treat iron deficiency anemia in children

New NIH-funded study aims to find novel way to treat iron deficiency anemia in children

Penn State College of Medicine and University of Wisconsin have been awarded a five-year, $2.5 million grant from the National Institutes of Health to fund the study of a novel way to treat iron deficiency anemia in children. Iron deficiency is the most common nutritional deficiency and the leading cause of anemia in the United States. [More]
Scientists receive NARSAD Distinguished Investigator Grants for mental health research

Scientists receive NARSAD Distinguished Investigator Grants for mental health research

The Brain & Behavior Research Foundation today announced the award of NARSAD Distinguished Investigator Grants valued at $1.5 million to 15 scientists, who are full professors or the equivalent, conducting innovative projects in diverse areas of neurobiological and behavioral research. [More]
UCSD researchers implicate new gene in idiopathic or non-syndromic autism

UCSD researchers implicate new gene in idiopathic or non-syndromic autism

With the help of mouse models, induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) and the "tooth fairy," researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine have implicated a new gene in idiopathic or non-syndromic autism. The gene is associated with Rett syndrome, a syndromic form of autism, suggesting that different types of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) may share similar molecular pathways. [More]
Mice may hold clues in development of ADHD, autism and bipolar disorder

Mice may hold clues in development of ADHD, autism and bipolar disorder

A darting mouse may hold an important clue in the development of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), autism and bipolar disorder, according to a study by a Vanderbilt University-led research team recently published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. [More]

Study shows racial disparity in autism identification

The number of children diagnosed with autism has increased in recent years, but a new study co-authored by a University of Kansas professor shows that while the number of students with autism increased in every state from 2000 to 2007, black and Hispanic children were significantly underrepresented. [More]
Johns Hopkins researchers capture images of protein complex that keeps hearts beating

Johns Hopkins researchers capture images of protein complex that keeps hearts beating

For years, a multidisciplinary team of Johns Hopkins researchers has tracked an elusive creature, a complex of proteins thought to be at fault in some cases of sudden cardiac death. As they report Nov. 5 in the online edition of Nature Communications, they have finally captured images of the complex. [More]
Study provides answers regarding scientific controversies about brain anatomy in autism research

Study provides answers regarding scientific controversies about brain anatomy in autism research

In the largest MRI study to date, researchers from Ben-Gurion University of the Negev and Carnegie Mellon University have shown that the brain anatomy in MRI scans of people with autism above age six is mostly indistinguishable from that of typically developing individuals and, therefore, of little clinical or scientific value. [More]
VTT develops innovative magnetometer for applications such as medical imaging

VTT develops innovative magnetometer for applications such as medical imaging

VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland has developed an innovative magnetometer that can replace conventional technology in applications such as neuroimaging, mineral exploration and molecular diagnostics. Its manufacturing costs are between 70 and 80 per cent lower than those of traditional technology, and the device is not as sensitive to external magnetic fields as its predecessors. The design of the magnetometer also makes it easier to integrate into measuring systems. [More]
Epilepsy: A true window on the brain

Epilepsy: A true window on the brain

Rapidly emerging technologies, novel imaging techniques, the development of new therapies and new genes, have given researchers and clinicians an extraordinary ability to explore the brain at the cellular, genetic and neural levels. While current epilepsy research may seem like it's ripped from the pages of a science fiction novel, it's real—and even pretty cool. [More]