Treatments

Intensive Treatment Found To Be Highly Effective

Source: 
Newswise
Date Published: 
April 6, 2010
Abstract: 

Results of a randomized clinical trial found an innovative multi-component summer social development program to be effective in improving the social performance of children with high-functioning autism spectrum disorders.

Moderators, Mediators,and Other Predictors of Risperidone Response in Children with Autistic Disorder and Irritability

Source: 
Journal of Childhood and Adolescent Psychopharmacology, Arnold et al
Date Published: 
April 2010
Year Published: 
2010

The National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) Research Units on Pediatric Psychopharmacology (RUPP) Autism Network found an effect size of d = 1.2 in favor of risperidone on the main outcome measure in an 8-week double-blind, placebo-controlled trial for irritability in autistic disorder. This paper explores moderators and mediators of this effect.  This study found the benefit-risk ratio of risperidone is better with greater symptom severity. Risperidone can be individually titrated to optimal dosage for excellent response in the majority of children. Weight gain is not necessary for risperidone benefit and may even detract from it. Socioeconomic advantage, low prolactin, and absence of co-morbid problems nonspecifically predict better outcome. Mineral interactions with risperidone deserve further study.

Reading Remediation Seems to Rewire the Brain

Source: 
US News & World Report
Date Published: 
February 26, 2010
Abstract: 

Scientists studying the anatomy of children's brains during reading discovered something rather unexpected: Remedial training for poor readers results in a growth of white matter tracts in the brain, and the increase correlates with the level of improvement in sounding out words.

Autism and Schizophrenia: Research Builds on Genetic Link

Source: 
Medical News Today
Date Published: 
February 24, 2010
Abstract: 

A genetic link between schizophrenia and autism is enabling researchers to study the effectiveness of drugs used to treat both illnesses. Dr. Steve Clapcote from the University of Leeds's Faculty of Biological Sciences will be analyzing behavior displayed by mice with a genetic mutation linked to schizophrenia and autism and seeing how antipsychotic drugs affect their behavioral abnormalities.

Gene Mutation is Linked to Autism-Like Symptoms in Mice, Reseachers Find

Source: 
Science Daily
Date Published: 
February 24, 2010
Abstract: 

When a gene implicated in human autism is disabled in mice, the rodents show learning problems and obsessive, repetitive behaviors, researchers at UT Southwestern Medical Center have found. The researchers also report that a drug affecting a specific type of nerve function reduced the obsessive behavior in the animals, suggesting a potential way to treat repetitive behaviors in humans

Music Training Enhances Brainstem Activity to Speech Sounds

Source: 
Science Daily
Date Published: 
February 22, 2010
Abstract: 

At a Feb. 20 press briefing held during the American Association for the Advancement of Science annual meeting, a Northwestern University neuroscientist argued that music training has profound effects that shape the sensory system and should be a mainstay of K-12 education. Kraus presented her own research and the research of other neuroscientists suggesting music education can be an effective strategy in helping typically developing children as well as children with developmental dyslexia or autism more accurately encode speech.

Oxytocin Improves Social Behavior of Patients, French Study Finds

Source: 
Science Daily
Date Published: 
February 17, 2010
Abstract: 

Autism is a disease characterized by difficulties in communicating effectively with other people and developing social relationships. A team led by Angela Sirigu at the Centre de Neuroscience Cognitive (CNRS) has shown that the inhalation of oxytocin, a hormone known to promote mother-infant bonds and social relationships, significantly improved the abilities of autistic patients to interact with other individuals.

Time to Regroup on Autism

Source: 
CNN.com
Date Published: 
February 3, 2010
Abstract: 

Alison Singer says link between autism, vaccinations debunked but research progressing. But, she says, new science is overshadowed as some cling to discredited study. Some parents put kids in danger by still avoiding vaccines, trying dicey "therapies". New research should move forward with science as a guide.

OSR#1: Industrial Chemical or Autism Treatment?

Source: 
Chicago Tribune
Date Published: 
January 17, 2010
Abstract: 

An industrial chemical developed to help separate heavy metals from polluted soil and mining drainage is being sold as a dietary supplement by a luminary in the world of alternative autism treatments. Called OSR#1, the supplement is described on its Web site as an antioxidant not meant to treat any disease. But the site lists pharmacies and doctors who sell it to parents of children with autism, and the compound has been promoted to parents on popular autism Web sites. A search of medical journals unearthed no papers published about OSR#1, though the compound's industrial uses have been explored in publications such as the Journal of Hazardous Materials.

Cartoon Trains Teach Autistic Children About Emotions

Source: 
The Sydney Morning Herald
Date Published: 
January 7, 2010
Abstract: 

Putting a human face on a cartoon train, bus or tram proved to help children with autism understand emotions. The head of the University of Cambridge's Autism Research Centre, Simon Baron-Cohen, conducted a study using a series of 15 animated stories called The Transporters. Each episode focused on a different emotion - from simple ones such as happy, sad and angry to more complex emotions such as sorry, ashamed, tired and joking. The findings showed children with autism spectrum conditions had improved emotion recognition after watching the 3D program for 15 minutes a day over a month.