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You have heard a lot about how the pandemic affected those with a diagnosis – and it isn’t good. Recent studies have turned their attention to stress and anxiety and depression of caregivers during the pandemic. It was higher in those parents with children of a neurodevelopmental disorder, but it was also complicated, related to the functioning of …
 
On this week’s podcast, we interview Dr. Giacomo Vivanti from the AJ Drexel Autism Institute who, together with Daniel Messinger from University of Miami, wrote an analysis of how research and intervention have changed since the DSMIII was written 40 years ago. They include theories of the causes of autism, the theories of the deficits and strength…
 
Two weeks ago the topic was gene x environment interactions. But some genetic variants, including rare genetic variants, can exert huge influence on a diagnosis by themselves. New data from genetic samples that have been sequenced are showing an increase in the number of these genes and the role of these genes, and how they work with common variant…
 
The practice of ABA, or applied behavioral analysis, can be easily misunderstood. Rather than a single procedure, ABA is a variety of techniques that can be applied to different situations to improve communication, reduce aggression, and improve the quality of life of people on the spectrum. Why is it getting a bad reputation? Is the ABA of today t…
 
You have maybe heard about how environmental exposures after conception or birth may affect genetic expression and then risk of developing autism. But what research has been done to look at preconceptional exposures, presumably exposures that affect the cells that then give rise to sperm and eggs? Turns out they are susceptible to some environmenta…
 
A couple of weeks ago, a group in Australia published a study that investigated the efficacy of a “preemptive” intervention. That is, what happens if you provide support to parents to improve social communication, interaction and skills in infants before a diagnosis can be made? The results have a lot of meaningful implications of what intervention…
 
You may know this as “masking” or “camouflaging” where autistic adults intentionally or unintentionally hide their autistic features to pass as non-autistic because they want to hide some of their challenges. This week, Drs. Erin Libsack and Matthew Lerner from Stony Brook University summarize a systematic review on this behavior. The original goal…
 
Instead of a podcast, this week is a message in honor of the 1 year anniversary of the death of advocate and mother Feda Amaliti. Stay safe. Out of this tragedy, a website has been built that contains information for families on how to prepare for an unexpected emergency and what to do when it happens. Please go to www.september26.org. Also, we nee…
 
Early changes in eye gaze – or the time spent looking at another person’s face compared to the scene around them – is diminished in ASD. It starts to decline at about 12 months and is linked to later social communication behaviors. But many people wonder why this is an early developing behavior worth studying? Also, what happens in school age to ki…
 
https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/34378867/ There have been several small, or small-ish, studies looking at the link between dementia and autism or ID. However, recently, the largest medical record study of 500k people, 12k of which were autistic and 26k were autistic and had ID, examining early onset dementia was published. Those with ASD had a 1.9 …
 
Siblings of people on the spectrum, including autistic adults, are amazing. They support, advocate, fundraise, and now we know they actually have a direct influence on the outcome of their affected brother or sister. What’s that effect? When is it most obvious? Does gender or race matter? All of these questions will be answered by […]…
 
Food insecurity during the pandemic is affecting us all, but even before the pandemic it was a greater problem in families affected by ASD. Now, during the pandemic and restrictions in access to food, food programs at schools and unemployment, it’s an even bigger problem. Dr. Arun Kapur from Autism Speaks describes his study examining […]…
 
It’s estimated that anywhere from 10%-30% of females on the spectrum also suffer from an eating disorder, and that autistic traits are high (even without a diagnosis of ASD) in those with eating disorders. There is clearly crossover in the underlying biology somehow, but while that is being determined – help for those with ASD […]…
 
Children and infants who later go on to have an autism diagnosis show impairments in communication. Is there anything that parents can do? Yes! Talk. Talk in complicated sentences. Talk responsively and keep it up. This isn’t always an inherent skill, it’s learned, and in this podcast we talk about the biological basis of why […]…
 
While there are commonalities across autistic adults on many things, they differ. It might be time to stop saying “…..all autistic adults” when describing those on the spectrum. For example, for the most part, most autistic adults prefer email or text over other methods except when talking to friends and family. It was not universal, […]…
 
It turns out that autistic individuals have a higher rate of gender variance than those not on the spectrum. This doesn’t require treatment in the traditional sense, but a better awareness, psychosocial supports, and understanding among clinicians that can provide services and help for those that need it. Today’s podcast focuses on recent studies l…
 
Is it genes or is it the environment? or is it a combination? This question has plagued researchers and scientists and caused a lot of confusion in families about what caused their own or their child’s ASD. This week we review the mechanisms by which de-novo mutations could be the work of gene x environment […]…
 
There have been a lot of questions about the safety of the COVID-19 vaccine, especially now that it is being offered to everyone 12 and up. At first it was restricted to the elderly, now other groups are eligible. But not everyone wants the vaccine and in fact about 30% of Americans either refuse or […]…
 
What babies look at during development and how much time they spend looking at people vs things has received a lot of criticism from some advocates who feel scientists should be spending less time on differences and more on practical solutions. Those two concepts are getting closer and closer and our early understandings of early […]…
 
What causes some of the differences across people with autism? Can you predict who will have what features of autism by looking first at genetics? This week’s ASFpodcast is the first 20 minutes of a webinar with Samuel Chawner from Cardiff University that explains his findings about behavioral features across people with autism with difference […]…
 
On this week’s podcast, we answer your question: “what’s the evidence of a gut-brain connection”? We can’t answer that question without starting off with a description of the microbiome. The microbiome is the colony of organisms in your gastrointestinal system that is showing increasing evidence of influencing brain function. We asked three experts…
 
If you missed this year’s Day of Learning, the videos will be up soon. But if you are a podcast listener, you can listen a 20 minute recap on this week’s podcast. The topics included the effects of the pandemic on family functioning and clinician diagnosis and assessments, lessons learned through the pandemic, the role […]…
 
This week’s ASF podcast topic comes from the listeners: what is the link between ASD and ADHD? Do parents diagnosed with ADHD have a greater chance of having a child with ASD? What are the similarities and differences? And what do families need to know? We interviewed Dr. Meghan Miller from the University of California […]…
 
Scientists who help families affected by ASD may look like they have it all together, but the pandemic has been catastrophic not just on discoveries to help families, but to the people who conduct research, meet with families, and provide services. They have lives too, and those lives have interrupted their abilities to provide care […]…
 
What topics have been on your mind that you would like to hear about on a podcast? Is it scientific? Theoretical? Abstract? concrete? Would you like to hear from an expert and which one? Do you not know but you want to hear more? Come at me: ahalladay@autismsciencefoundation.org and TELL me what topics are of […]…
 
Early on in the pandemic, clinicians struggled with how to turn in-person evaluations into Telehealth evaluations. One year later: what have they done? How have they modified? How do parents feel about these changes? Should they stay or should they go? This topic will be featured on our ASF Day of Learning on April 22nd […]…
 
In a study over over 64 MILLION people across the US, COVID-19 has been shown to be most deadly to those with an intellectual disability. This was once a theory, now it is a proven fact. Take action! Write your governor and demand that intellectual disability and neurodevelopment disorders be put on the priority list […]…
 
You’ve heard a lot about CRISPR technology to manipulate gene expression. But what have scientists actually learned? Well, the cells in which DNA is manipulated could come from different animal models, including frogs and mice. These model systems are used to track brain development, sex differences, and the downstream effects of convergence of gen…
 
Sleep is a huge problem in ASD. But is it just “sleep” or can we get more specific? What role do genetics have? And does being autistic make sleep problems worse? Answers come from an unlikely source: mice! Learn more about recent scientific evidence tying sleep problems to ASDs and neurodevelopmental disorders. These include: type […]…
 
ABA and ABA – inspired behavioral therapies like Naturalistic Developmental Behavioral Interventions are the most commonly used in autism. They have become more sophisticated in design, using control groups and implementing other ways to minimize bias. But when you put all of the data together around ABA-type interventions in a pile, are they effec…
 
Parents may see challenges in their kids with ASD, but they also know what is great about them and the unique gifts they bring to the world. Now, researchers from Canada have inventoried and categorized these list of great qualities in a large study of children from 3-10 years of age. These “best things” identified […]…
 
On this week’s podcast, two new studies which explore the concept of subgroups of ASD are described. First, a “genetics-first” approach. Dr. Samuel Chawner at Cardiff University compares autism symptoms in those with copy number variants to those with no known genetic cause and asks: how similar to each other are they and can genetics […]…
 
On today’s ASF podcast, ASF funded researcher Ileena Mitra from the lab of Dr. Melissa Gymrek at UCSD will explain a new type of “de novo” genetic mutation. Those are those spontaneous mutation that happen in kids with ASD but not parents or family members. So where did they come from? Well, this study looks […]…
 
Everyone needs some physical activity, but people on the spectrum typically get less activity than those not diagnosed with ASD. Why? There are multiple reasons, but as it turns out it can’t all be blamed on the obvious culprit of increased screen time or video game use. Those can be reasons why teenagers get less […]…
 
Welcome to 2021! Over the holiday break, autism researchers were busy coming up with answers to important questions: 1) how does an environmental exposure relevant to ASD change gene expression and 2) does Telehealth work and for whom? The first question was addressed by an ASF undergraduate who published in Nature. He is going to […]…
 
This week’s podcast is the Year End Summary of scientific discoveries in 2020. Guess what leads these highlights? That’s right! The COVID-19 pandemic and the Black Lives Matter movement. Even though these events significantly affected the lives of people with autism, and will heavily influence future research directions, there were actually other i…
 
What do cats, the Developmental Check-In and parent training all have in common? They all have the documented potential to help children gain emotional skills, social skills, and receive earlier intervention. A small study shows the potential of a well-tempered cat in easing symptoms of autism. Parent training has been shown time and time again […]…
 
People with autism have lots of problems, and sleep is one of them. This week’s podcast explores when these problems begin, which brain areas are involved, and how autism contributes to, or suffers from, lack of sleep. Does sleep make ASD worse or are ASD symptoms causing a sleep problems? It’s not a one way […]…
 
There have been more than a few podcasts lately about why intellectual abilities (or disability) are important in understanding ASD. It will probably be a theme in the end of year summary. This week, intellectual ability affects risk of dying from COVID and how anxiety is measured. Some studies show that increasing cognitive ability increases […]…
 
Girls and boys with autism generally show the same symptoms of ASD overall, but what about different aspects of features? What would happen if you studied girls and boys separately and examined detailed assessments of things like motor skills, repetitive behavior, communication or social interaction? These are where subtle signs of differences betw…
 
Separating out those with ASD with an intellectual disability from those with ASD without an intellectual disability can more precisely identify factors that influence probability of having a child with ASD as well as factors which can prevent or preclude services. For example, in those without an intellectual disability, there seems to be stronger…
 
If only 10% of people with ASD have a known genetic mutation associated with autism, what is the point? Why bother? This week we discuss why it is important for that 10%, what the benefits are, and how genetic testing may help the other 90% as well. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0002929720301130 https://pediatrics.aappublicatio…
 
On this day, October 12th, we celebrate Indigenous People’s Day by talking about how many indigenous people have ASD, what services to they receive and what are scientists around the world doing to help them. It’s not enough, but it’s a start. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32762685/ https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31999495/ https://pubmed.ncbi.nl…
 
We are now about 8 months into the pandemic and the effects of social distancing. How are families doing? What are scientists doing to understand the effects and ways to help families in the future? This podcast describes four international studies that addressed what families were experiencing and how they were coping. A list of […]…
 
The Scoop podcast Inclusion Sucks. Or, Why My Son with Severe Autism Has Nowhere to Swim this Summer Three Strikes… and He’s Out? What happens when the regular world has had enough of my son’s autism https://www.ncsautism.org/blog//three-strikes-and-hes-out https://www.npr.org/sections/coronavirus-live-updates/2020/05/22/861079758/he-s-incredibly-c…
 
On this week’s ASF weekly science podcast, we provide a recent review on influences of speech and language both in those with ASD who are verbally fluent, as those who have minimal verbal ability. What does the brain look like in those with minimal verbal ability and are there interventions to help improve social communication […]…
 
Not all people with autism spectrum disorder are the same, obviously. Are there things that can predict positive outcome? Are they different based on something like cognitive ability? And what determines cognitive ability and how early is it seen? Have other studies lumped all the autisms into one pile which has represented what people along […]…
 
The racial and ethnic disparities in the diagnosis of ASD has always been unacceptable, but it’s been hard to figure out. This week, researchers published their findings from a close look at 500 African American families with ASD to understand what the barriers were to a timely diagnosis. The results are not surprising, but they […]…
 
There are many many potential factors that influence a diagnosis of ASD that have been underexplored, and recreational drugs are one of them. Of course it would never explain all the cases of ASD, not one singular thing does, but does cannabis consumption during pregnancy lead to an increased probability of having a child with […]…
 
This week the ASF Podcast explores two ways to better understand the environmental influences in ASD diagnosis: 1. through potential cost savings of avoided cases of ASD due to reduced air pollution and 2. by studying pre-conception exposures going back as far as the grandparents exposure. These two concepts do not prove any one thing, […]…
 
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זכויות יוצרים 2021 | מפת אתר | מדיניות פרטיות | תנאי השירות
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