New Clues to Causes of Autism Found
Aug. 29, 2013
A group of enzymes in the brain appears to be key to the activity of many genes linked to autism, a new study reveals. Experts hope the findings will shed light on the causes of autism, and possibly lead to new treatments. The study results, published online Aug. 28 in the journal Nature, hint that if disruptions in enzymes called topoisomerases occur during brain development, they might contribute to the development of autism spectrum disorders.


Non-verbal girl with autism creates amazing art for good cause
Aug.21, 2013
Candy is a 12-year-old girl with autism who began losing her motor skills when she was a toddler. Even though she’s non-verbal, she’s able to inspire the world. Robert and his wife Sandy Waters treasure the moments with their daughter, who communicates through art. “She brightens up, she laughs which is priceless for us,” her father, Robert Waters, says. “I just think maybe she’s happy and she wants to tell us she is happy and fine, you know. It’s rough when I think of that.”


Autistic boy’s family overwhelmed by support for son after hate-filled letter
Aug. 21, 2013
Inside the Begley home in Oshawa, the phone keeps ringing. “The bikers want to get Max a vest with their crest on it,” Brenda Millson says from the kitchen, covering the receiver with her hand. “What size would he take?” “Go ask Jim, please,” her daughter, Karla Begley, says. “That’s so sweet,” Millson says as she walks outside. Jim Begley has done the laundry, and wife Karla is folding a large pile on the couch, exhausted from the last few days of media appearances related to a hateful letter about their son. This latest bit of public support, Begley explains, is from a biker club that wants to have a brigade for Maxwell starting in Newcastle. There is also talk of a street party.


Family Of Boy With Autism Receives Shockingly Offensive Letter
Aug. 19, 2013

A disturbing letter targeting a teen with autism has shaken the boy’s family and rallied the local community to their defense. The anonymous note was sent to 13-year-old Max’s grandmother’s house in Newcastle, Ontario, on Friday. Signed, “One pissed off mother,” the letter refers to Max as a neighborhood “nuisance,” “retarded” and a “dreadful” noise polluter. A photo of the letter was tweeted over the weekend by YouTube stars Lennon and Maisy, who identify themselves as family friends.


Autism is shared among siblings, study finds
Aug. 19, 2013
A second child is seven times more likely to be diagnosed with autism if an older sibling has the diagnosis, but environmental factors may be playing a significant role, according to a study of 1.5 million children born over a 24-year period.


Soda linked to behavioral problems in young children, study says
Aug. 16, 2013
Soda has already been blamed for making kids obese. New research blames the sugary drinks for behavioral problems in children too. Analyzing data from 2,929 families, researchers linked soda consumption to aggression, attention problems and social withdrawal in 5-year-olds. They published their findings in the Journal of Pediatrics on Friday.


For Children With Autism, Finding Expression Through Art
Aug. 15, 2013
Despite being closed for renovations this summer, the Queens Museum of Art is continuing its work with families affected by autism through a series of weekly art classes in libraries around the borough. Funded by VSA, the Kennedy Center’s International Organization on Arts and Disability, the Friendship Workshop is one of several autism initiatives created and delivered by the museum’s ArtAccess program in recent years.


Teenager Tackles Autism With help From Google Glass
Aug. 13, 2013
As you slip on the Google Glass frames — placing them carefully over your own eyeglasses — you’re told they can read the emotions of the people around you. You peer through the frames, focusing on the tiny digital display hovering in the air, and just beyond the display, there’s a face looking back at you, smiling about as wide as it can smile. But the payoff doesn’t come. Though the face is less than a foot away, Glass doesn’t read the happiness. “Neutral,” the display says.


Increased Risk of Autism May Be Linked To Labor Induction and Augmentation
Aug. 13, 2013
A large, retrospective study, funded by the Environmental Protection Agency and published in JAMA Pediatrics, did not show a causal relationship between autism and labor induction or augmentation. However it did find a link, which researchers suggests warrants further study to explore potential explanations of the association (like underlying pregnancy conditions along with the events of labor and delivery) — especially since both procedures are frequently used in the delivery room.


Autism Might Be Linked With inducing And Speeding Up Labor (STUDY)
Aug. 12, 2013
The biggest study of its kind suggests autism might be linked with inducing and speeding up labor, preliminary findings that need investigating since labor is induced in increasing numbers of U.S. women, the authors and other autism experts say. It’s possible that labor-inducing drugs might increase the risk – or that the problems that lead doctors to start labor explain the results. These include mothers’ diabetes and fetal complications, which have previously been linked with autism.


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