Monthly Research Updates

researchScientists and researchers are constantly uncovering more information related to autism, offering insights into the origins, possible causes and even at times potential cures. I come across dozens of articles on a weekly basis, some of which seem more important than others. I thought I would share on a monthly basis stories that caught my eye.

~ Maureen


New Findings on Regression in Autism

Evidence suggests that regression may actually be a part of a continuum of atypical development that begins earlier and more subtly in infancy. Additionally, research indicates an earlier, more gradual onset of autism symptoms.

Read the full article here.

https://www.autismspeaks.org/blog/2016/03/04/new-findings-regression-autism-researchers-perspective

Preschoolers with Autism Gain When Teachers Foster Shared Attention

In a new study, researchers showed that preschoolers with autism gain more language and initiate more communication when teachers learn to use a simplified version of a behavioral therapy that emphasizes shared attention and child-directed play. The study is among the first to show that an early intervention for autism – proven effective for one-on-one behavioral therapy with an autism specialist – can be successfully adapted for classroom use.

Read the full article here.

http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10803-016-2752-2

Early Interest in Beta Blockers for Autism

The drug propranolol was originally developed to help control high blood pressure and heart rate. Like other beta-blocker drugs, it blocks certain receptors for noradrenaline, a powerful hormone. Propranolol also crosses into the brain to produce a calming effect. For this reason, it’s been used “off label” for decades to ease performance anxiety. Most recently, a small study showed that propranolol temporarily improved conversational skills in adults with autism.

Read the full article here.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26762378

The Invisible Link Between Autism & Anorexia

                Emerging research shows that people with either anorexia or autism have difficulties understanding and interpreting social cues, and tend to fixate on tiny details that make it difficult to see the big picture. Genetic studies also suggest overlaps between autism and anorexia. Some estimates hold that as much as 20% of people with enduring eating disorders have autism.

Read the full article here.

https://spectrumnews.org/features/deep-dive/the-invisible-link-between-autism-and-anorexia/

 

Tune in next month for an update on autism research!

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