With so many children suffering from autism spectrum disorder (ASD) throughout the world, people are constantly looking for research progress in this area. Here are four latest research findings on ASD.
1. Autism is in the Genes
It has been found that gene and genetic mutations contribute to ASD. Research has identified 60 genes that have more than 90% chance of contributing to ASD among 500 or more genes. More research must be conducted into the roles of these genes and how they affect the brain.
2. How brain pruning can contribute to ASD
For understanding how these genetic mutations affect brain maturation, neuroscientists are investigating what is different about the brains of children who suffer from autism. Researchers are investigating how the process of brain cell pruning can go wrong in children with ASD. According to the scientists, ASD is associated with higher levels of a molecule that may impair the ability of brain cells to get rid of dysfunctional cell components.
3. White matter fiber tracts are different in children with ASD
The white matter fiber that allows information to be efficiently transferred between brain regions is different in children with ASDs. The white matter of the brain doesn’t work as efficiently in children with ASD as they work for normal developing children.
4. Early intervention can give good results
Scientists using the Early Start Denver Model (ESDM) showed that it significantly improved IQ and language abilities in toddlers having ASD. Children who completed the ESDM intervention had quicker neural response. ESDM intervention may develop brain changes that result in higher IQ, social behaviors, and language abilities.
These exciting findings are an indication that the research on ASD is advancing. With such progress, we may soon find a cure to this disorder.