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Estrogen Receptor May Play a Role in Autism

September 11, 2014

THURSDAY, Sept. 11, 2014 (HealthDay News) — Significantly lower levels of a key estrogen receptor may play a role in autism spectrum disorders, according to a new study.
This link between autism and sex hormones could help explain why the condition is about four times more common among men than women, the researchers noted.
“Our study [...]

Spotting, Treating Autism Symptoms in Infancy May Prevent Developmental Delays

September 9, 2014

Among infants as young as 6 months old who exhibited symptoms of autism, therapy provided by parents seemed to prevent developmental delays by age 3 in most of the tots, a small new study suggests.

Do Antidepressants in Pregnancy Raise Risks for Mental Woes in Kids?

August 27, 2014

WEDNESDAY, Aug. 27, 2014 (HealthDay News) — There’s been controversy for years over whether the use of common antidepressants by women during their pregnancies might raise the odds of mental health issues in their children.
Now, a study involving more than 13,000 children finds no rise in the risk of autism in children whose mothers [...]

Kids With Autism Have Extra Brain Connections, Study Says

August 21, 2014

THURSDAY, Aug. 21, 2014 (HealthDay News) — Researchers report that children with autism appear to have excess synapses — cellular connections — in their brains compared with typical children.
The scientists also believe it might be possible to reduce the number of extra synapses through drug treatment.
Synapses are the points in the brain where brain cells [...]

‘Love Hormone’ Oxytocin May Play Key Role in Kids’ Social Skills

August 4, 2014

By Dennis ThompsonHealthDay Reporter
MONDAY, Aug. 4, 2014 (HealthDay News) — The “love hormone” oxytocin has a tremendous effect on kids’ ability to function socially, Stanford University researchers report.
Children blessed with naturally high levels of oxytocin are more savvy at communicating with others and interpreting social signals or situations, said study author Karen Parker, an assistant [...]

Different Areas of Brain Affected in Autism, Sensory Disorders

July 30, 2014

WEDNESDAY, July 30, 2014 (HealthDay News) –
Although the vast majority of kids with autism have abnormal sensory behaviors, their brains are still wired very differently from children who have trouble processing sensory stimuli, researchers report.
Children with sensory processing disorders (SPD) can be overly sensitive to sound, sight and touch. They can also have poor motor [...]

Less Flexibility Seen in Brain Wiring of Kids With Autism: Study

July 29, 2014

By Randy DotingaHealthDay Reporter
TUESDAY, July 29, 2014 (HealthDay News) — When most children take on a task, various brain connections fire up. But scans showed less of this neuro-boosting activity in kids with autism, according to a small new study.
Moreover, children with more severe symptoms of autism displayed even less of this “brain flexibility,” the [...]

How the “Love Hormone” Oxytocin Could Help Some With Autism

July 29, 2014

Treating certain adult autism patients with just a single dose of the hormone oxytocin quickly improved their ability to judge facial expressions and emotions, Japanese researchers report.

Parents of Children With Autism Need Help, Too

July 22, 2014

By Dennis ThompsonHealthDay Reporter
TUESDAY, July 22, 2014 (HealthDay News) — Most therapies for autism focus on the child, but new research suggests the child’s stressed-out parents could benefit from treatments designed specifically for them.
Mothers of autistic children who took part in a coping skills program found they connected better with their child and felt less [...]

Common Genes Implicated in Autism Study

July 20, 2014

SUNDAY, July 20, 2014 (HealthDay News) — Most of the genetic risk for autism appears to come from common gene variants rather than spontaneous gene mutations, according to a new study.
Researchers compared about 3,000 people in Sweden with and without autism and found that about 52 percent of autism was linked to common gene variants [...]


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