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In Brief

  • Clinical research: Fever during pregnancy linked to autism
    26 June 2012
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    An untreated fever during pregnancy more than doubles the risk that the child will develop autism, according to a study published 5 May in the Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders.

  • Molecular mechanisms: Alzheimer's protein linked to autism
    22 June 2012
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    Amyloid-beta, the small protein that forms plaques in the brains of people with Alzheimer’s disease, is more prevalent in postmortem brains from individuals with autism than in those from controls, according to a study published 2 May in PLoS One.

  • Cognition and behavior: Context affects repetitive behavior
    20 June 2012
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    Repetitive behaviors are often motivated by anxiety when children with autism and intellectual disability transition from one task to the next, but they are linked to a desire for attention when the children have free time, according to a study published in May in the Journal of Applied Research in Intellectual Disabilities.

  • Genetics: Analysis identifies new autism candidate regions
    19 June 2012
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    An analysis of large duplications and deletions of DNA has identified new candidate genes for autism in pathways linked to the disorder. The results were published 22 May in Human Molecular Genetics.

  • Clinical research: Genetic variant improves effects of oxytocin
    15 June 2012
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    Men with a common autism-linked variant of CD38, a gene that regulates levels of the ‘trust hormone’ oxytocin, benefit more from the hormone than do those with other variants, according to a study published in the May issue of Neuropsychopharmacology.