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Rachel Scalzo, Tonya N Davis
Providing noncontingent access to a stimulus until an individual displays behavioral indicators of satiation has been used to determine when an abolishing operation is in effect, but there has been variation in its application in the literature. Four males diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder with tangibly maintained challenging behavior participated in this study. Individualized behavioral indicators were identified and verified to determine when each participant was finished playing with his/her preferred item...
October 18, 2016: Behavior Modification
Areerat Hnoonual, Thanya Sripo, Pornprot Limprasert
To identify the underlying genetic cause of autism spectrum disorder (ASD), we performed whole-exome sequencing in 10 unrelated Thai patients with ASD. We identified a novel heterozygous missense variant (c.425C>G, p.Pro142Arg) in the Engrailed 2 (EN2) gene in two patients. The G variant has never been reported in public databases and was absent in 100 Thai patients with ASD and 435 Thai controls. A case-control study showed that the G allele of c.425C>G was significantly associated with ASD (Fisher's exact test, P=0...
October 14, 2016: Psychiatric Genetics
Seong-Tshool Hong
The human intestine contains a massive and complex microbial community called gut microbiota. A typical human carries 100 trillion microbes in his/her body which is 10 times greater than the number of their host cells, i.e. whole number of human cells. A combined microbial genome constituting gut microbiota is well excess our own human genome. The microbial composition of gut microbiotata and its role on diseases became a booming area of research, presenting a new paradigm of opportunities for modern medicines...
September 2016: Journal of Hypertension
E Rizos, N Siafakas, E Skourti, C Papageorgiou, J Tsoporis, T H Parker, D I Christodoulou, D A Spandidos, E Katsantoni, V Zoumpourlis
Schizophrenia (SZ) and cancer (Ca) have a broad spectrum of clinical phenotypes and a complex biological background, implicating a large number of genetic and epigenetic factors. SZ is a chronic neurodevelopmental disorder signified by an increase in the expression of apoptotic molecular signals, whereas Ca is conversely characterized by an increase in appropriate molecular signaling that stimulates uncontrolled cell proliferation. The rather low risk of developing Ca in patients suffering from SZ is a hypothesis that is still under debate...
October 14, 2016: Molecular Medicine Reports
Cyrus Vahdatpour, Adam H Dyer, Daniela Tropea
Insulin-Like Growth Factor 1 (IGF-1) is a neurotrophic polypeptide with crucial roles to play in Central Nervous System (CNS) growth, development and maturation. Following interrogation of the neurobiology underlying several neurodevelopmental disorders and Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD), both recombinant IGF-1 (mecasermin) and related derivatives, such as (1-3)IGF-1, have emerged as potential therapeutic approaches. Clinical pilot studies and early reports have supported the safety/preliminary efficacy of IGF-1 and related compounds in the treatment of Rett Syndrome, with evidence mounting for its use in Phelan McDermid Syndrome and Fragile X Syndrome...
2016: Frontiers in Neuroscience
S Hossein Fatemi, Timothy D Folsom, Stephanie B Liesch, Rachel E Kneeland, Mahtab Karkhane Yousefi, Paul D Thuras
Prenatal viral infection has been identified as a potential risk factor for the development of neurodevelopmental disorders such as schizophrenia and autism. Additionally, dysfunction in gamma-aminobutyric acid, Reelin, and fragile X mental retardation protein (FMRP)-metabotropic glutamate receptor 5 signaling systems has also been demonstrated in these two disorders. In the current report, we have characterized the developmental profiles of selected markers for these systems in cerebella of mice born to pregnant mice infected with human influenza (H1N1) virus on embryonic day 16 or sham-infected controls using SDS-PAGE and Western blotting techniques and evaluated the presence of abnormalities in the above-mentioned markers during brain development...
October 13, 2016: Journal of Neuroscience Research
Antoine Tanet, Annik Hubert-Barthelemy, Graciela C Crespin, Nicolas Bodeau, David Cohen, Catherine Saint-Georges
INTRODUCTION: Individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) who also exhibit severe-to-moderate ranges of intellectual disability (ID) still face many challenges (i.e., less evidence-based trials, less inclusion in school with peers). METHODS: We implemented a novel model called the "Developmental and Sequenced One-to-One Educational Intervention" (DS1-EI) in 5- to 9-year-old children with co-occurring ASD and ID. The treatment protocol was adapted for school implementation by designing it using an educational agenda...
2016: Frontiers in Pediatrics
Senthilkumar Sivanesan, Aaron Tan, Rebecca Jeyaraj, James Lam, Monica Gole, Antonio Hardan, Keyoumars Ashkan, Jayakumar Rajadas
Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASDs) are a group of complex neurodevelopmental conditions characterized by abnormal patterns of attention, and impaired social and communication skills. ASDs are also associated with a number of functional challenges and potentially harmful deficits, including restricted and repetitive behaviors, anxiety, irritability, seizures, and self-harm. Although the exact causes of ASDs are currently unknown, it is suggested that genetic, epigenetic and environmental factors play critical roles...
October 7, 2016: World Neurosurgery
Chiaki Hasegawa, Takashi Ikeda, Yuko Yoshimura, Hirotoshi Hiraishi, Tetsuya Takahashi, Naoki Furutani, Norio Hayashi, Yoshio Minabe, Masayuki Hirata, Minoru Asada, Mitsuru Kikuchi
Spontaneous face-to-face interactions between mothers and their children play crucial roles in the development of social minds; however, these inter-brain dynamics are still unclear. In this pilot study, we measured MEG mu suppression during face-to-face spontaneous non-linguistic interactions between mothers and their children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) using the MEG hyperscanning system (i.e., simultaneous recording). The results demonstrated significant correlations between the index of mu suppression (IMS) in the right precentral area and the traits (or severity) of ASD in 13 mothers and 8 children (MEG data from 5 of the children could not be obtained due to motion noise)...
October 10, 2016: Scientific Reports
Lars Westberg, Susanne Henningsson, Anna Zettergren, Joakim Svärd, Daniel Hovey, Tian Lin, Natalie C Ebner, Håkan Fischer
The ability to recognize faces is crucial for daily social interactions. Recent studies suggest that intranasal oxytocin administration improves social recognition in humans. Oxytocin signaling in the amygdala plays an essential role for social recognition in mice, and oxytocin administration has been shown to influence amygdala activity in humans. It is therefore possible that the effects of oxytocin on human social recognition depend on mechanisms that take place in the amygdala-a central region for memory processing also in humans...
2016: Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience
Paul A G Forbes, Xueni Pan, Antonia F de C Hamilton
Mimicry involves unconsciously copying the actions of others. Increasing evidence suggests that autistic people can copy the goal of an observed action but show differences in their mimicry. We investigated mimicry in autism spectrum disorder (ASD) within a two-dimensional virtual reality environment. Participants played an imitation game with a socially engaged avatar and socially disengaged avatar. Despite being told only to copy the goal of the observed action, autistic participants and matched neurotypical participants mimicked the kinematics of the avatars' movements...
September 30, 2016: Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders
Susan Ellis Weismer, Eileen Haebig, Jan Edwards, Jenny Saffran, Courtney E Venker
This study investigated whether vocabulary delays in toddlers with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) can be explained by a cognitive style that prioritizes processing of detailed, local features of input over global contextual integration-as claimed by the weak central coherence (WCC) theory. Thirty toddlers with ASD and 30 younger, cognition-matched typical controls participated in a looking-while-listening task that assessed whether perceptual or semantic similarities among named images disrupted word recognition relative to a neutral condition...
October 1, 2016: Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders
Johan Christiaan Bester
Importance: Measles is a highly communicable viral infection with serious complications. There have been continued outbreaks of measles in countries in which measles is considered to be eliminated, such as the United States and the Netherlands, and measles remains endemic in some countries. Health care professionals play an important role in diagnosing and managing acute cases of measles, preventing spread during outbreaks, and vaccination uptake. Objective: To provide an overview of measles and vaccination for health care professionals...
October 3, 2016: JAMA Pediatrics
Gerhard S Drenthen, Evelien M Barendse, Albert P Aldenkamp, Tamar M van Veenendaal, Nicolaas A J Puts, Richard A E Edden, Svitlana Zinger, Geert Thoonen, Marc P H Hendriks, Roy P C Kessels, Jacobus F A Jansen
Previous studies have suggested that alterations in excitatory/inhibitory neurotransmitters might play a crucial role in autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy ((1)H-MRS) can provide valuable information about abnormal brain metabolism and neurotransmitter concentrations. However, few (1)H-MRS studies have been published on the imbalance of the two most abundant neurotransmitters in ASD: glutamate (Glu) and gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA). Moreover, to our knowledge none of these published studies is performed with a study population consisting purely of high-functioning autism (HFA) adolescents...
October 30, 2016: Psychiatry Research
Jessica F Hoffman, Christopher L Wright, Margaret M McCarthy
UNLABELLED: Identifying and understanding critical periods in brain development is essential to decoding the long-term impact of widespread, poorly defined, and frequently occurring insults such as inflammation. Using the laboratory rat Rattus norvegicus, we have discovered a narrowly constrained critical period in Purkinje neuron development subject to dysregulation by inflammation. The onset and offset of heightened vulnerability are attributed to a tightly orchestrated gene expression profile present only during the second postnatal week and not the first or third weeks...
September 28, 2016: Journal of Neuroscience: the Official Journal of the Society for Neuroscience
M Servadio, F Melancia, A Manduca, A di Masi, S Schiavi, V Cartocci, V Pallottini, P Campolongo, P Ascenzi, V Trezza
Autism spectrum disorders (ASD) are characterized by altered sociability, compromised communication and stereotyped/repetitive behaviors, for which no specific treatments are currently available. Prenatal exposure to valproic acid (VPA) is a known, although still underestimated, environmental risk factor for ASD. Altered endocannabinoid activity has been observed in autistic patients, and endocannabinoids are known to modulate behavioral traits that are typically affected in ASD. On this basis, we tested the hypothesis that changes in the endocannabinoid tone contribute to the altered phenotype induced by prenatal VPA exposure in rats, with focus on behavioral features that resemble the core and associated symptoms of ASD...
2016: Translational Psychiatry
Dustin Scheinost, Rajita Sinha, Sarah N Cross, Soo Hyun Kwon, Gordon Sze, R Todd Constable, Laura R Ment
Human neurodevelopment requires the organization of neural elements into complex structural and functional networks called the connectome. Emerging data suggest that prenatal exposure to maternal stress plays a role in the wiring, or miswiring, of the developing connectome. Stress-related symptoms are common in women during pregnancy and are risk factors for neurobehavioral disorders ranging from autism spectrum disorder, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, and addiction, to major depression and schizophrenia...
September 27, 2016: Pediatric Research
Stephanie E Zimmer, Steven G Doll, A Denise R Garcia, Michael R Akins
The autism-related protein Fragile X mental retardation protein (FMRP) is an RNA binding protein that plays important roles during both nervous system development and experience dependent plasticity. Alternative splicing of the Fmr1 locus gives rise to 12 different FMRP splice forms that differ in the functional and regulatory domains they contain as well as in their expression profile among brain regions and across development. Complete loss of FMRP leads to morphological and functional changes in neurons, including an increase in the size and complexity of the axonal arbor...
September 19, 2016: Developmental Neurobiology
Miia Kaartinen, Kaija Puura, Sari-Leena Himanen, Jaakko Nevalainen, Jari K Hietanen
Sustained autonomic arousal during eye contact could cause the impairments in eye contact behavior commonly seen in autism. The aim of the present study was to re-analyze the data from a study by Kaartinen et al. (J Autism Develop Disord 42(9):1917-1927, 2012) to investigate the habituation of autonomic arousal responses to repeated facial stimuli and the correlations between response habituation and social impairments among children with and without ASD. The results showed that among children with ASD, the smaller the habituation was, specifically in responses to a direct gaze, the more the child showed social impairments...
September 16, 2016: Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders
Natsumi Takesaki, Mitsuru Kikuchi, Yuko Yoshimura, Hirotoshi Hiraishi, Chiaki Hasegawa, Reizo Kaneda, Hideo Nakatani, Tetsuya Takahashi, Laurent Mottron, Yoshio Minabe
Some individuals with autism spectrum (AS) perform better on visual reasoning tasks than would be predicted by their general cognitive performance. In individuals with AS, mechanisms in the brain's visual area that underlie visual processing play a more prominent role in visual reasoning tasks than they do in normal individuals. In addition, increased connectivity with the visual area is thought to be one of the neural bases of autistic visual cognitive abilities. However, the contribution of such brain connectivity to visual cognitive abilities is not well understood, particularly in children...
2016: PloS One
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