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Autism & Communication

C H M Cheung, R Bedford, M H Johnson, T Charman, T Gliga
An enhanced ability to detect visual targets amongst distractors, known as visual search (VS), has often been documented in Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). Yet, it is unclear when this behaviour emerges in development and if it is specific to ASD. We followed up infants at high and low familial risk for ASD to investigate how early VS abilities links to later ASD diagnosis, the potential underlying mechanisms of this association and the specificity of superior VS to ASD. Clinical diagnosis of ASD as well as dimensional measures of ASD, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and anxiety symptoms were ascertained at 3 years...
September 30, 2016: Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience
Joanna Granich, Alena Dass, Margherita Busacca, Dennis Moore, Angelika Anderson, Svetha Venkatesh, Thi Duong, Pratibha Vellanki, Amanda Richdale, David Trembath, Darin Cairns, Wendy Marshall, Tania Rodwell, Madeleine Rayner, Andrew J O Whitehouse
BACKGROUND: Evidence for early intensive behavioural interventions (EIBI) by therapists as an effective treatment for children with an Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is growing. High-intensity and sustained delivery of quality EIBI is expensive. The TOBY (Therapy Outcomes by You) Playpad is an App-based platform delivering EIBI to facilitate learning for young children with ASD, while enabling parents to become co-therapists. Intervention targets include increasing joint attention, imitation and communication of children with ASD...
October 19, 2016: BMC Pediatrics
T Rene Jamison, Jessica Oeth Schuttler
A majority of social skills research in autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and interventions target school age males and no published studies target adolescent females with ASD or related disabilities. Females with ASD are at risk for internalizing symptoms, and experience greater challenges in socialization and communication as social demands become increasingly complex in adolescence. This paper provides a thorough description of a social skills and self-care program designed to address the specific needs of adolescent females with ASD...
October 18, 2016: Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders
Giulia Umbrello, Susanna Esposito
BACKGROUND: The microbiota colonizing the gastrointestinal tract have been associated with both gastrointestinal and extra-gastrointestinal diseases. In recent years, considerable interest has been devoted to their role in the development of neurologic diseases, as many studies have described bidirectional communication between the central nervous system and the gut, the so-called "microbiota-gut-brain axis". Considering the ability of probiotics (i.e., live non-pathogenic microorganisms) to restore the normal microbial population and produce benefits for the host, their potential effects have been investigated in the context of neurologic diseases...
October 19, 2016: Journal of Translational Medicine
R E Frye, J Slattery, L Delhey, B Furgerson, T Strickland, M Tippett, A Sailey, R Wynne, S Rose, S Melnyk, S Jill James, J M Sequeira, E V Quadros
We sought to determine whether high-dose folinic acid improves verbal communication in children with non-syndromic autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and language impairment in a double-blind placebo control setting. Forty-eight children (mean age 7 years 4  months; 82% male) with ASD and language impairment were randomized to receive 12 weeks of high-dose folinic acid (2 mg kg(-1) per day, maximum 50 mg per day; n=23) or placebo (n=25). Children were subtyped by glutathione and folate receptor-α autoantibody (FRAA) status...
October 18, 2016: Molecular Psychiatry
Cath Rogers, Laurence Lepherd, Rahul Ganguly, Sebastian Jacob-Rogers
PROBLEM: Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is an increasingly commonly diagnosed disability. People with ASD commonly report challenges in social interaction and a heightened sensory perception. These challenges may be particularly difficult for women during pregnancy, birthing and beyond. BACKGROUND: Very little is known about the experiences and needs of birthing women who have ASD. There is a large body of literature about women who have autistic children, but almost nothing about women who may have this disability themselves...
October 14, 2016: Women and Birth: Journal of the Australian College of Midwives
Emily Moulton, Kathryn Bradbury, Marianne Barton, Deborah Fein
The Childhood Autism Rating Scale (CARS), (Schopler et al. in J Autism Dev Disord 10(1):91-103, 1980) is a 15-item observation-based rating scale that yields a total score reflective of autism symptom severity. This study investigated the factor structure of the CARS in a sample of 2-year-old children with DSM-IV-TR (American Psychiatric Association in Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders, 4th edn. American Psychiatric Publishing, Washington, 2000) diagnoses of AD or PDD-NOS. Following a preliminary internal cross-validation, principal axis factor analysis was completed (N = 282)...
October 14, 2016: Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders
Sanae Tanaka, Manabu Oi, Hiroshi Fujino, Mitsuru Kikuchi, Yuko Yoshimura, Yui Miura, Masatsugu Tsujii, Harue Ohoka
Some overlap has been suggested among the subtypes of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) in children. The Japanese version of the Children's Communication Checklist-2 (CCC-2) is a useful measure for identifying profiles in relation to communication impairments in children with ASD. The aim of this study was to investigate whether the CCC-2 could identify subtypes in relation to communication impairments in Japanese children with ASD. The study participants were 113 children with ASD but without intellectual disabilities aged 3-12 years...
October 14, 2016: Clinical Linguistics & Phonetics
Hee Jeong Yoo, Mira Park, Soon Ae Kim
OBJECTIVES: Several reports suggest that mitochondrial dysfunction is involved in the pathophysiology of autism spectrum disorders (ASD). Therefore, mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) copy number, a common biomarker for mitochondrial dysfunction, might be associated with ASD phenotypes. METHODS: Relative mtDNA copy number in the peripheral blood cells of 100 Korean ASD patients and their unaffected sib-pairs was measured by quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR). RESULTS: ASD patients had significantly higher relative mtDNA copy numbers than their unaffected sibs (P = ...
October 14, 2016: World Journal of Biological Psychiatry
Melissa DeFilippis, Karen Dineen Wagner
Autism spectrum disorder is a diagnosis that includes significant social communication deficits/delays along with restricted patterns of interests and behaviors. The prevalence of this diagnosis has increased over the past few decades, and it is unclear whether this is solely attributable to the increased awareness of milder forms of the disorder among medical providers. The current treatment options for the core symptoms of autism are limited to psychosocial therapies, such as applied behavior analysis. Medications have been most effective in treating the associated behavioral symptoms of autism, though studies have examined potential benefits in some of the core symptoms of autism with certain medications, especially the repetitive behaviors often seen with this diagnosis...
August 15, 2016: Psychopharmacology Bulletin
Tao Xiong, Hongju Chen, Rong Luo, Dezhi Mu
BACKGROUND: The rising prevalence of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) has increased the need for evidence-based treatments to lessen the impact of symptoms. Presently, no therapies are available to effectively treat individuals with all of the symptoms of this disorder. It has been suggested that hyperbaric oxygen therapy may alleviate the biochemical dysfunction and clinical symptoms of ASD. OBJECTIVES: To determine whether treatment with hyperbaric oxygen:1. improves core symptoms of ASD, including social communication problems and stereotypical and repetitive behaviors;2...
October 13, 2016: Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews
Chien-Hsu Chen, Chuan-Po Wang, I-Jui Lee, Chris Chun-Chin Su
BACKGROUND: We analyzed the efficacy of the interface design of speech generating devices on three non-verbal adolescents with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), in hopes of improving their on-campus communication and cognitive disability. The intervention program was created based on their social and communication needs in school. Two operating interfaces were designed and compared: the Hierarchical Relating Menu and the Pie Abbreviation-Expansion Menu. METHODS: The experiment used the ABCACB multiple-treatment reversal design...
2016: SpringerPlus
J Painter, L Trevithick, R P Hastings, B Ingham, A Roy
BACKGROUND: In meeting the needs of individuals with intellectual disabilities (ID) who access health services, a brief, holistic assessment of need is useful. This study outlines the development and testing of the Learning Disabilities Needs Assessment Tool (LDNAT), a tool intended for this purpose. METHOD: An existing mental health (MH) tool was extended by a multidisciplinary group of ID practitioners. Additional scales were drafted to capture needs across six ID treatment domains that the group identified...
October 11, 2016: Journal of Intellectual Disability Research: JIDR
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
Yi Pang, Xuemei Dai, Anna Roller, Kathleen Carter, Ian Paul, Abhay J Bhatt, Rick C S Lin, Lir-Wan Fan
Perinatal infection is a well-identified risk factor for a number of neurodevelopmental disorders, including brain white matter injury (WMI) and Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). The underlying mechanisms by which early life inflammatory events cause aberrant neural, cytoarchitectural, and network organization, remain elusive. This study is aimed to investigate how systemic lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced neuroinflammation affects microglia phenotypes and early neural developmental events in rats. We show here that LPS exposure at early postnatal day 3 leads to a robust microglia activation which is characterized with mixed microglial proinflammatory (M1) and anti-inflammatory (M2) phenotypes...
2016: PloS One
Eyal Aronoff, Robert Hillyer, Michael Leon
We have previously shown in two randomized clinical trials that environmental enrichment is capable of ameliorating symptoms of autism spectrum disorder (ASD), and in the present study, we determined whether this therapy could be effective under real-world circumstances. 1,002 children were given daily Sensory Enrichment Therapy, by their parents, using personalized therapy instructions given over the Internet. Parents were asked to assess the symptoms of their child every 2 weeks for up to 7 months. An intention-to-treat analysis showed significant overall gains for a wide range of symptoms in these children, including learning, memory, anxiety, attention span, motor skills, eating, sleeping, sensory processing, self-awareness, communication, social skills, and mood/autism behaviors...
2016: Neural Plasticity
Jocelyn Bessette Gorlin, Cynthia Peden McAlpine, Ann Garwick, Elizabeth Wieling
This research examined the experiences of families living with a child with severe autism. There is limited literature on the experiences of families when a child has severe autism as distinct from milder autism and includes the voices of multiple family members. Van Manen's phenomenological approach was used for data collection and analysis. This approach allowed for the use of innovative data sources, including unstructured individual and family interviews, observations, and family lifelines (a pictorial, temporal picture with comments of the families lives)...
October 6, 2016: Journal of Pediatric Nursing
Sungji Ha, Hyunjun Park, Usman Mahmood, Jeong Chan Ra, Yoo-Hun Suh, Keun-A Chang
Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a complex neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by impairments in social interaction and communication, and patients often display co-occurring repetitive behaviors. Although the global prevalence of ASD has increased over time, the etiology and treatments for ASD are poorly understood. Recently, some researchers have suggested that stem cells have therapeutic potential for ASD. Thus, in the present study, we investigated the therapeutic effects of human adipose-derived stem cells (hASCs), a kind of autologous mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) isolated from adipose tissue, on valproic acid (VPA)-induced autism model mice...
October 4, 2016: Behavioural Brain Research
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