Treatments

Scientists Identify New Drug Strategy Against Fragile X Syndrome

Source: 
Science Daily
Date Published: 
August 10, 2010
Abstract: 

Researchers at Emory University School of Medicine have identified a potential new strategy for treating fragile X syndrome -- the most common inherited cause of intellectual disability. The researchers have found that a class of drugs called phosphoinositide-3 (PI3) kinase inhibitors can correct defects in the anatomy of neurons seen in a mouse model of fragile X syndrome.

Autism: Lack of Evidence for Antidepressants, Study Concludes

Source: 
Science Daily
Date Published: 
August 7, 2010
Abstract: 

Antidepressants commonly prescribed to people with autistic spectrum disorders cannot be recommended based on current evidence, a new study by Cochrane Researchers concludes. Despite some evidence of benefits in adults diagnosed with autism, they say there is no evidence for any benefits associated with selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) in children, who may suffer serious adverse effects as a result of taking the drugs.

FDA: Autism Therapy Illegal

Source: 
Los Angeles Times
Date Published: 
June 23, 2010
Abstract: 

A product promoted to parents of children with autism is not a harmless dietary supplement, as claimed, but a toxic unapproved drug that lacks adequate warnings about potential side effects, including hair loss and abnormalities of the pancreas, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has warned in a letter to its maker.

Immune System Troubles Could Spark Behavior Woes

Source: 
Bloomberg Businessweek
Date Published: 
May 27, 2010
Abstract: 

In the first scientific illustration of exactly how some psychiatric illnesses might be linked to an immune system gone awry, researchers report they cured mice of an obsessive-compulsive condition known as "hair-pulling disorder" by tweaking the rodents' immune systems.

Mt. Sinai Identifies First Drug to Demonstrate Therapeutic Effect in a Type of Autism

Source: 
EurekAlert
Date Published: 
May 20, 2010
Abstract: 

Researchers from Mount Sinai School of Medicine have identified a drug that improves communication between nerve cells in a mouse model of Phelan-McDermid Syndrome (PMS). Behavioral symptoms of PMS fall under the autism spectrum disorder category.

Kids with Autism Not Helped by Parent Training Alone

Source: 
Web MD
Date Published: 
May 20, 2010
Abstract: 

Training parents to adapt communication to their child's impairments doesn't affect the child's autism but does help the parent-child relationship, U.K. researchers find. The idea was that training parents to respond to their child's specific communication needs would jump-start the child's social development and improve the child's general communication skills.

Popular Autism Diet Does Not Demonstrate Behavioral Improvement

Source: 
Science Daily
Date Published: 
May 20, 2010
Abstract: 

A popular belief that specific dietary changes can improve the symptoms of children with autism was not supported by a tightly controlled University of Rochester study, which found that eliminating gluten and casein from the diets of children with autism had no impact on their behavior, sleep or bowel patterns.

Mutation Could Point Tourette Treatment

Source: 
Wall Street Journal
Date Published: 
May 6, 2010
Abstract: 

Researchers identified a rare genetic mutation that may open a new avenue for treating Tourette syndrome in a study published Wednesday that examined a family in which the father and all eight children suffer from the neurological disorder.

The family's mutation affected a gene required to produce histamine. Pharmaceutical companies are already developing drugs for other conditions that target the brain's histamine system. The study's researchers are planning a clinical trial of adults with Tourette to see if those drugs would help control the motor and vocal tics that characterize the condition.

New Research Raises Hope that Autism Effects May Be Reversible

Source: 
Medical News Today
Date Published: 
April 22, 2010
Abstract: 

A new study by researchers at The George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences' Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology raises hope that autism may be more easily diagnosed and that its effects may be more reversible than previously thought. Researchers have identified potentially removable chemical tags (called "methyl groups") on specific genes of autistic individuals that led to gene silencing. They also observed these changes in cells derived from blood, opening the way to molecular screening for autism using a blood test.

New Study Of Autism Reveals a 'DNA tag' Amenable To Treatment

Source: 
EurekAlert
Date Published: 
April 8, 2010
Abstract: 

A new discovery raises hope that autism may be more easily diagnosed and that its effects may be more reversible than previously thought. In a new study appearing online in The FASEB Journal, scientists have identified a way to detect the disorder using blood and have discovered that drugs which affect the methylation state ("DNA tagging") of genes could reverse autism's effects. This type of drug is already being used in some cancer treatments.