TOPIC

Treatments

Efforts to ease the symptoms of autism are beginning to ramp up, with promising candidates in various stages of testing.

Features / Deep Dive
Photography by Vanessa McKeown

Why don’t we have better drugs for autism?

by  /  15 February 2017
Clinical trials for autism drugs have been plagued with problems: bad design, the wrong measures, too broad a range of participants. All that is finally starting to change.
Opinion / Q&A
Photography by Vanessa McKeown

Questions for Gahan Pandina: New tool may aid autism trials

by  /  14 February 2017
A new ‘knowledge engine’ collects reams of behavioral and sensory data to create highly sensitive outcome measures for autism drugs.
Features / Deep Dive
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This is a story of autism in small-town America

by  /  1 February 2017
Rural living can be wonderful: community, friendly faces, a slower pace of life. But when there’s autism in the family, it can be tough.
January 2017
Brain boost: A virus that delivers pieces of RNA (green) to cells boosts expression of the FOXG1 gene (red) in a mouse brain.
News

New approach may treat autism by dialing up genes

by  /  26 January 2017

Injecting tiny pieces of RNA into the brain may someday serve as a therapy for certain forms of autism.

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News

Drugmakers manipulate orphan drug rules to create monopolies

by , ,  /  24 January 2017

The system intended to help those with rare diseases is being manipulated by drugmakers to maximize profits and to protect niche markets for medicines that millions of people already take — and it’s all legal.

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Pep Boatella
News

Experimental autism treatments put to test in real world

by  /  16 January 2017

Researchers are modifying autism therapies for the various communities tasked with implementing them — a move they hope will make treatments more effective for and accessible to all children.

2 Comments
Moving target: Brain waves known as beta oscillations reflect brain activity that controls body movements and may signal telltale changes in DNA.AJPhoto / Science Source
News

Brain-wave patterns distinguish dup15q syndrome

by  /  13 January 2017

Children with an extra copy of the 15q11-13 chromosomal region, the second most common genetic abnormality in people with autism, have unusually strong brain waves called beta oscillations. The preliminary findings, presented Friday at the Dup15q Alliance Scientific Meeting in Orlando, Florida, suggest that beta oscillations could distinguish children with dup15q syndrome from those with other forms of autism.

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Features / Deep Dive

The curious connection between autism and cancer

by  /  11 January 2017

A surprising number of genes associated with autism also have links to cancer. Does that mean cancer drugs can treat autism?

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Illustration by Pep Boatella
Opinion / Columnists / Life Science

Technology can curb social exclusion of children with autism

by  /  10 January 2017

Apps, robots and brain imaging can help children with autism improve their social skills and connect with other people.

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Seeing spots: The brain responds differently to animations of dots moving in random patterns (right) compared with ones that resemble a person moving (left).
News

Brain scans may forecast effectiveness of autism treatment

by  /  9 January 2017

Patterns of activity in certain brain regions may predict how well a child with autism will respond to a behavioral therapy.

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December 2016
Heavy pill on scale
Features / Special Reports / 2016: Year in review

Hot topics of 2016

26 December 2016

These five trending topics hint at important discoveries to come.

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Rodney Brooks / Getty Images
News

Some people in ‘failed’ drug trial for autism showed benefit

by  /  14 December 2016

An experimental drug called arbaclofen improved autism features in about 13 percent of people who took it in a shuttered clinical trial.

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November 2016
SolStock  / iStock
News

Massive mental health bill faces vote in U.S. Congress

by ,  /  30 November 2016

If passed, the $6.3 billion 21st Century Cures Act would make mental health a national priority.

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