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  • Widely used genetic technique may lead to spurious results
    7 August 2014
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    A popular method that neuroscientists use to simulate the effects of a mutation may alter the brain and produce misleading results, cautions a study published 18 June in Neuron.

  • Mutant protein causes reversible autism-like behaviors
    4 August 2014
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    Mice that begin expressing a mutant version of a protein called neurexin at 2 weeks of age develop autism-like behaviors that researchers can erase weeks or months later. The report, published 24 July in Cell Reports, suggests that it may be possible to treat autism symptoms even in adulthood.

  • Suicidal thoughts alarmingly common in people with autism
    31 July 2014
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    The idea that people with autism don’t feel strong emotions is a myth: Many of them are vulnerable to depression, despair and even suicide. New research documents alarmingly high rates of suicidal thoughts and actions in this group — and suggests that their distress takes unique forms.

  • Autism gene affects brain function early in development
    28 July 2014
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    Mutations in a gene linked to intellectual disability and sometimes autism may lead to a permanent boost in brain activity, according to a study published 18 June in Neuron.

  • Common mutations account for half of autism risk
    21 July 2014
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    Common genetic variants that have minor effects may contribute about half the risk of developing autism, according to a study published Sunday in Nature Genetics. Identifying these variants would require tens of thousands of samples.