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28 papers 0 to 25 followers Animal models of autism and related issues
By Joao B
Roula N Choueiri, Andrew W Zimmerman
The assessment of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is complex and remains clinical, despite advances in basic research. In this chapter, we review new and updated clinical tools, such as screening and diagnostic tests, and discuss the DSM-5 criteria introduced in 2013. We provide an algorithm to guide clinical evaluation and referrals. We also review non-behavioral treatments and summarize recent research. Current conventional treatment of ASD in children includes intensive behavioral interventions (known as applied behavioral analysis or ABA), rehabilitative services such as speech therapy, occupational therapy, physical therapy, social skills training, and counseling...
February 2017: Current Treatment Options in Neurology
Hans Sperup Brünner, Rune Rasmussen
This commentary centers on the novel findings by Shepard et al. (2016) published in eNeuro. The authors interrogated tonotopic map dynamics in auditory cortex (ACtx) by employing a natural sound-learning paradigm, where mothers learn the importance of pup ultrasonic vocalizations (USVs), allowing Shepard et al. to probe the role of map area expansion for auditory learning. They demonstrate that auditory learning in this paradigm does not rely on map expansion but is facilitated by increased inhibition of neurons tuned to low-frequency sounds...
January 2017: ENeuro
Hiroko Kagawa, Yoshimasa Seki, Kazuo Okanoya
We recorded single unit activity within and around the rat amygdala while rats were engaged in an operant task (which included both reward and aversive trials) and during playback of ultrasonic vocalizations (USVs) to determine if there existed neurons which responded to two different types of either positive contexts (i.e., water reward and positively associated 50kHz vocalizations) or negative contexts (i.e., white noise and negatively associated 22kHz vocalizations). Ultimately, we wanted to determine if these two contexts (operant condition task and vocal sounds) could be represented as either positive or negative in a single neuron...
May 1, 2017: Behavioural Brain Research
Emanuel Lauber, Federica Filice, Beat Schwaller
Autism spectrum disorders (ASD) comprise a number of heterogeneous neurodevelopmental diseases characterized by core behavioral symptoms in the domains of social interaction, language/communication and repetitive or stereotyped patterns of behavior. In utero exposure to valproic acid (VPA) has evolved as a highly recognized rodent ASD model due to the robust behavioral phenotype observed in the offspring and the proven construct-, face- and predictive validity of the model. The number of parvalbumin-immunoreactive (PV(+)) GABAergic interneurons has been consistently reported to be decreased in human ASD subjects and in ASD animal models...
2016: Frontiers in Molecular Neuroscience
Katie Greenfield, Danielle Ropar, Alastair D Smith, Mark Carey, Roger Newport
BACKGROUND: Evidence indicates that social functioning deficits and sensory sensitivities in autism spectrum disorder (ASD) are related to atypical sensory integration. The exact mechanisms underlying these integration difficulties are unknown; however, two leading accounts are (1) an over-reliance on proprioception and (2) atypical visuo-tactile temporal binding. We directly tested these theories by selectively manipulating proprioceptive alignment and visuo-tactile synchrony to assess the extent that these impact upon body ownership...
2015: Molecular Autism
Ralph Adolphs
Social cognition in humans is distinguished by psychological processes that allow us to make inferences about what is going on inside other people-their intentions, feelings, and thoughts. Some of these processes likely account for aspects of human social behavior that are unique, such as our culture and civilization. Most schemes divide social information processing into those processes that are relatively automatic and driven by the stimuli, versus those that are more deliberative and controlled, and sensitive to context and strategy...
2009: Annual Review of Psychology
Myka L Estes, A Kimberley McAllister
Increasing evidence points to a central role for immune dysregulation in autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Several ASD risk genes encode components of the immune system and many maternal immune system-related risk factors--including autoimmunity, infection and fetal reactive antibodies--are associated with ASD. In addition, there is evidence of ongoing immune dysregulation in individuals with ASD and in animal models of this disorder. Recently, several molecular signalling pathways--including pathways downstream of cytokines, the receptor MET, major histocompatibility complex class I molecules, microglia and complement factors--have been identified that link immune activation to ASD phenotypes...
August 2015: Nature Reviews. Neuroscience
Shulamite A Green, Leanna Hernandez, Nim Tottenham, Kate Krasileva, Susan Y Bookheimer, Mirella Dapretto
IMPORTANCE: More than half of youth with autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) have sensory overresponsivity (SOR), an extreme negative reaction to sensory stimuli. However, little is known about the neurobiological basis of SOR, and there are few effective treatments. Understanding whether SOR is due to an initial heightened sensory response or to deficits in regulating emotional reactions to stimuli has important implications for intervention. OBJECTIVE: To determine differences in brain responses, habituation, and connectivity during exposure to mildly aversive sensory stimuli in youth with ASDs and SOR compared with youth with ASDs without SOR and compared with typically developing control subjects...
August 2015: JAMA Psychiatry
Mônica R Favre, Deborah La Mendola, Julie Meystre, Dimitri Christodoulou, Melissa J Cochrane, Henry Markram, Kamila Markram
Understanding the effects of environmental stimulation in autism can improve therapeutic interventions against debilitating sensory overload, social withdrawal, fear and anxiety. Here, we evaluate the role of environmental predictability on behavior and protein expression, and inter-individual differences, in the valproic acid (VPA) model of autism. Male rats embryonically exposed (E11.5) either to VPA, a known autism risk factor in humans, or to saline, were housed from weaning into adulthood in a standard laboratory environment, an unpredictably enriched environment, or a predictably enriched environment...
2015: Frontiers in Neuroscience
Juan Facundo Morici, Pedro Bekinschtein, Noelia V Weisstaub
The study of the neurobiology of recognition memory, defined by the integration of the different components of experiences that support recollection of past experiences have been a challenge for memory researches for many years. In the last twenty years, with the development of the spontaneous novel object recognition task and all its variants this has started to change. The features of recognition memory include a particular object or person ("what"), the context in which the experience took place, which can be the arena itself or the location within a particular arena ("where") and the particular time at which the event occurred ("when")...
October 1, 2015: Behavioural Brain Research
Kristen A Wellmann, Elena I Varlinskaya, Sandra M Mooney
Prenatal exposure to valproic acid (VPA) alters rodent social interactions in a dose-dependent way: exposure to a high dose of VPA (>500 mg/kg) mid-gestation decreases social interactions whereas a moderate dose of VPA (350 mg/kg) increases peer-directed social behavior. The moderate dose also decreases expression of the mRNA for serine in amygdala and orbitofrontal cortex. In this study, we examined whether d-cycloserine could ameliorate VPA-induced alterations in ultrasonic vocalizations (USVs), social interactions, and locomotor activity...
September 2014: Brain Research Bulletin
S Raza, A Harker, S Richards, B Kolb, R Gibb
Autism is a severe neurodevelopmental disorder with a population prevalence of 1 in 68, and dramatically increasing. While no single pharmacologic intervention has successfully targeted the core symptoms of autism, emerging evidence suggests that postnatal environmental manipulations may offer greater therapeutic efficacy. Massage therapy, or tactile stimulation (TS), early in life has repeatedly been shown to be an effective, low-cost, therapeutic approach in ameliorating the cognitive, social, and emotional symptoms of autism...
April 1, 2015: Behavioural Brain Research
K Suzanne Scherf, Daniel Elbich, Nancy Minshew, Marlene Behrmann
Despite the impressive literature describing atypical neural activation in visuoperceptual face processing regions in autism, almost nothing is known about whether these perturbations extend to more affective regions in the circuitry and whether they bear any relationship to symptom severity or atypical behavior. Using fMRI, we compared face-, object-, and house-related activation in adolescent males with high-functioning autism (HFA) and typically developing (TD) matched controls. HFA adolescents exhibited hypo-activation throughout the core visuoperceptual regions, particularly in the right hemisphere, as well as in some of the affective/motivational face-processing regions, including the posterior cingulate cortex and right anterior temporal lobe...
2015: NeuroImage: Clinical
Rachel C Leung, Elizabeth W Pang, Daniel Cassel, Jessica A Brian, Mary Lou Smith, Margot J Taylor
Impaired social interaction is one of the hallmarks of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Emotional faces are arguably the most critical visual social stimuli and the ability to perceive, recognize, and interpret emotions is central to social interaction and communication, and subsequently healthy social development. However, our understanding of the neural and cognitive mechanisms underlying emotional face processing in adolescents with ASD is limited. We recruited 48 adolescents, 24 with high functioning ASD and 24 typically developing controls...
2015: NeuroImage: Clinical
John D Herrington, Meghan E Riley, Daniel W Grupe, Robert T Schultz
This study examines whether deficits in visual information processing in autism-spectrum disorder (ASD) can be offset by the recruitment of brain structures involved in selective attention. During functional MRI, 12 children with ASD and 19 control participants completed a selective attention one-back task in which images of faces and houses were superimposed. When attending to faces, the ASD group showed increased activation relative to control participants within multiple prefrontal cortex areas, including dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC)...
April 2015: Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders
Mai Hosokawa, Yoshihiro Nakadoi, Yukina Watanabe, Satsuki Sumitani, Tetsuro Ohmori
AIM: The aim of this study is to examine the hemodynamic changes induced by the cognitive process of facial expression by using multi-channel near-infrared spectroscopy in healthy subjects with varying degrees of autism tendency. METHODS: Subjects were 38 volunteers, 20 men and 18 women. Autism tendency was measured by the Autism Spectrum Quotient. The hemodynamic changes in the prefrontal cortex were measured by 24-channel near-infrared spectroscopy system, while subjects were asked to judge their own emotional response to standardized pictures of eight kinds of facial expressions on a computer screen...
March 2015: Psychiatry and Clinical Neurosciences
Abigail Dickinson, Elizabeth Milne
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
September 15, 2014: Journal of Neurophysiology
Shreya Bhat, U Rajendra Acharya, Hojjat Adeli, G Muralidhar Bairy, Amir Adeli
Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a complex neurobiological disorder characterized by neuropsychological and behavioral deficits. Cognitive impairment, lack of social skills, and stereotyped behavior are the major autistic symptoms, visible after a certain age. It is one of the fastest growing disabilities. Its current prevalence rate in the U.S. estimated by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is 1 in 68 births. The genetic and physiological structure of the brain is studied to determine the pathology of autism, but diagnosis of autism at an early age is challenging due to the existing phenotypic and etiological heterogeneity among ASD individuals...
2014: Reviews in the Neurosciences
Lucia Ciranna, Maria Vincenza Catania
Serotonin type 7 receptors (5-HT7) are expressed in several brain areas, regulate brain development, synaptic transmission and plasticity, and therefore are involved in various brain functions such as learning and memory. A number of studies suggest that 5-HT7 receptors could be potential pharmacotherapeutic target for cognitive disorders. Several abnormalities of serotonergic system have been described in patients with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), including abnormal activity of 5-HT transporter, altered blood and brain 5-HT levels, reduced 5-HT synthesis and altered expression of 5-HT receptors in the brain...
2014: Frontiers in Cellular Neuroscience
Danielle M Cusmano, Jessica A Mong
STUDY OBJECTIVES: To determine whether sleep disturbances are found in the valproic acid model of autism spectrum disorders (ASD). DESIGN: Comparative study for sleep behavior, sleep architecture, electroencephalogram (EEG) spectral analysis, and glutamic acid decarboxylase (GAD) 65/67 protein expression in juvenile rats exposed to valproic acid (VPA), sodium salt, or saline in utero. SETTING: N/A. PARTICIPANTS: Juvenile (postnatal day 32) male and female Sprague-Dawley rats...
2014: Sleep
2014-10-07 19:54:04
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