Autism

Research articles covering work related to austism spectrum disorders are provided below.

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Autism health challenges could be explained by problem behaviors

A new study explores the relationship between problem behaviors associated with autism and gastrointestinal symptoms. Findings suggest younger children on the autism spectrum with aggressive problem behaviors are 11.2% more likely to have co-occurring nausea, whereas older children with ASD had more complex relationships between internalizing symptoms and GI problems.... Read More...
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Researchers call for the term ‘high functioning autism’ to be consigned to history

Researchers argue the term "high functioning autism" be abandoned by the scientific community as it is misleading and may create harmful expectations of abilities for children on the autism spectrum. "High functioning autism" is not a diagnostic term. The term is based on IQ assessments rather than functional assessments. While children with ASD may exhibit normal-to-higher IQ for their age, many experience skill based, social and behavioral difficulties that impact their daily lives. ... Read More...
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Processed foods may hold key to rise in autism

Eating processed food which contains Propionic Acid (PPA) during pregnancy may affect neural stem cell development in the fetal brain. Excessive PPA reduces the number of neurons and over-produces glial cells, causing inflammation. Additionally, PPA shortens neural pathways. The combination of damaged pathways and reduced neurons may be associated with behavioral deficits associated with ASD.... Read More...
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Classification system based on co-occurring conditions may provide insight into autism

Gastrointestinal and immune disorders, along with sleep disruptions and seizures often co-occur at similar points of time in those diagnosed under the autism spectrum. Analyzing patterns in diagnosis of co-occurring medical conditions allowed for the identification of three subtypes of children with ASD. The findings could provide new insight into the mechanics of ASD.... Read More...
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Gut bacteria influence autism-like behaviors in mice

Using germ-free mouse models, researchers transplanted fecal bacteria from children on the autism spectrum and neurotypical children. Mice who received the transplants from the ASD cohort began to exhibit autism-like behaviors, whereas the mice who received transplants from typically developing children did not. Additionally, the mice showed altered gene expression in their brains and differences in types of metabolites present. In particular, the ASD mice had lower levels of 5AV and taurine. Findings suggest gut microbiota regulates autism-like behaviors via the production of neuroactive metabolites, providing further evidence for the gut-brain axis connection to the pathology of autism.... Read More...