Pubmed du 08/08/20

samedi 8 août 2020

1. Amini A, Namvarpour Z, Namvarpour M, Raoofi A. Risperidone accelerates bone loss in rats with autistic-like deficits induced by maternal lipopolysaccharides exposure. Life Sci ;2020 (Aug 8):118197.

AIMS : Patients with neurodevelopmental disorders, usually suffer from bone diseases. Many studies have revealed a higher risk of fracture after atypical antipsychotic drug Risperidone (RIS) treatment, which is usually used to treat such disorders. It remains debatable whether neurodevelopmental disorders by itself are the cause of bone diseases or pharmacotherapy may be the reason. MATERIALS AND METHODS : This study attempts to evaluate the biomechanical, histological, stereological, and molecular properties of bones in the offspring of Lipopolysaccharide (LPS) and saline-treated mothers that received saline, drug vehicle or the atypical antipsychotic drug risperidone (RIS) at different days of postnatal development. After postnatal drug treatment, animals were assessed for autistic-like behaviors. Then their bones were taken for evaluations. RESULTS : Maternal LPS exposure resulted in deficits in all behavioral tests and RIS ameliorated these behaviors (p < 0.01& p < 0.05). The administration of LPS and RIS individually led to a significant decrease in the biomechanical parameters such as bone stiffness, strength and the energy used to fracture of bone. The numerical density of osteocalcin-positive cells were significantly decreased in these groups. These rats also had decreased RUNX2 and osteocalcin gene expression. When LPS rats were treated with RIS, these conditions were accelerated (p < 0.001). DISCUSSIONS : The results of our preclinical study, consistent with previous studies in animals, explore that autistic-like deficits induced by prenatal exposure to LPS, can reduce bone stability and bone mass similar to those observed in neurodevelopmental disorders, and, for the first time, reveal that this condition worsened when these animals were treated with RIS.

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2. Ballester P, Richdale AL, Baker EK, Peiró AM. Sleep in autism : A biomolecular approach to aetiology and treatment. Sleep Med Rev ;2020 (Jul 9) ;54:101357.

People with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) commonly experience other comorbidities. Studies indicate that between 50% and 83% of individuals with ASD have sleep problems or disorders. The most commonly reported sleep problems are : (a) insomnia symptoms including the inability to get to sleep or stay asleep ; and (b) circadian rhythm sleep-wake disorders, defined as a misalignment between the timing of endogenous circadian rhythms and the external environment. The circadian system provides timing information for the sleep-wake cycle that is regulated by the interaction of an endogenous processes (circadian - Process C, and homeostatic - Process S) and synchronizing agents (neurohormones and neurotransmitters), which produce somnogenic activity. A clinical priority in ASD is understanding the cause of these sleep problems in order to improve treatment outcomes. This review approaches sleep in autism from several perspectives : Sleep-wake mechanisms and problems, and brain areas and molecules controlling sleep (e.g., GABA and melatonin) and wake maintenance (e.g., serotonin, acetylcholine and glutamate). Specifically, this review examines how altered sleep structure could be related to neurobiological alterations or genetic mutations and the implications this may have for potential pharmacological treatments in individuals with ASD.

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3. Bishop L, McLean KJ, Rubenstein E. Epilepsy in adulthood : Prevalence, incidence, and associated antiepileptic drug use in autistic adults in a state Medicaid system. Autism ;2020 (Aug 5):1362361320942982.

Epilepsy is more common in autistic children compared to children without autism, but we do not have good estimates of how many autistic adults have epilepsy. We used data from a full population of 7513 autistic adults who received Medicaid in Wisconsin to figure out the proportion of autistic adults who have epilepsy, as compared to 18,429 adults with intellectual disability. We also wanted to assess how often epilepsy is first diagnosed in adulthood. Finally, we wanted to see whether antiepileptic drugs are being used to treat epilepsy in autistic adults. We found that 34.6% of autistic adults with intellectual disability and 11.1% of autistic adults without intellectual disability had epilepsy, compared to 27.0% of adults with intellectual disability alone. Autistic women and autistic adults with intellectual disability were more likely than autistic men and autistic adults without intellectual disability to have both previous and new diagnoses of epilepsy. Finally, we found that antiepileptic medications are commonly prescribed to autistic people who do not have epilepsy potentially to treat mental health conditions or behavior problems, and that antiepileptic medications are not always prescribed to autistic people with epilepsy even though they are indicated as a first-line epilepsy treatment. The findings of this study highlight the need to effectively treat and prevent epilepsy in autistic adults.

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4. Ho FC, Lam CS, Lo SK. Differences Between Students With Comorbid Intellectual Disability and Autism Spectrum Disorder and Those With Intellectual Disability Alone in the Recognition of and Reaction to Emotions. J Autism Dev Disord ;2020 (Aug 5)

This study investigates whether students with intellectual disability (ID) alone differ from students with combined individual disability and autism spectrum disorder (ASD) in their recognition of emotions. The ability to recognise emotions does not mean that students automatically know how to react to these emotions. Differences in performance on recognition and reaction tasks are examined. Participants were 20 primary 6 students who had ID with ASD and 20 primary 6 students who had ID without ASD from four special schools. The testing and training materials were adapted from a local teaching package. The results showed that both groups exhibited similar performance patterns in recognition tasks. Students with comorbid ASD exhibited inferior performance in tasks requiring reactions to complex emotions.

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5. Holbrook S, Israelsen M. Speech Prosody Interventions for Persons With Autism Spectrum Disorders : A Systematic Review. Am J Speech Lang Pathol ;2020 (Aug 5):1-17.

Purpose Persons with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) may demonstrate abnormal prosodic patterns in conversational speech, which can negatively affect social interactions. The purpose of this systematic review was to identify interventions measuring the improvement of expressive speech prosody in persons with ASD in order to support clinician’s evidence-based decision making. Method We used 13 electronic databases to search for relevant articles using terms related to autism, intervention, and speech prosody. The databases identified a total of nine articles for the title, abstract, and full-text reviews. Five more articles were included after performing descendant and reference searches. One peer-reviewed article was excluded due to insufficient data received from the authors. We coded the resulting 13 articles for report, setting, intervention, outcome, and results characteristics and methodological quality. Results Results showed that interventions specifically targeting speech prosody using established and emerging evidence-based practices across more than 1 treatment day resulted in moderate to large improvements in speech prosody in persons with ASD. Interventions that indirectly targeted prosody or were very short resulted in small or nonsignificant effects. Discussion The results of this literature review suggest that interventions that directly target speech prosody using established evidence-based practices for ASD may be most effective for increasing typical prosodic patterns during speech for persons with ASD. Further research is needed to establish which interventions are most effective for each age range and context. Supplemental Material https://doi.org/10.23641/asha.12735926.

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6. Hörnberg H, Pérez-Garci E, Schreiner D, Hatstatt-Burklé L, Magara F, Baudouin S, Matter A, Nacro K, Pecho-Vrieseling E, Scheiffele P. Rescue of oxytocin response and social behaviour in a mouse model of autism. Nature ;2020 (Aug) ;584(7820):252-256.

A fundamental challenge in developing treatments for autism spectrum disorders is the heterogeneity of the condition. More than one hundred genetic mutations confer high risk for autism, with each individual mutation accounting for only a small fraction of cases(1-3). Subsets of risk genes can be grouped into functionally related pathways, most prominently those involving synaptic proteins, translational regulation, and chromatin modifications. To attempt to minimize this genetic complexity, recent therapeutic strategies have focused on the neuropeptides oxytocin and vasopressin(4-6), which regulate aspects of social behaviour in mammals(7). However, it is unclear whether genetic risk factors predispose individuals to autism as a result of modifications to oxytocinergic signalling. Here we report that an autism-associated mutation in the synaptic adhesion molecule Nlgn3 results in impaired oxytocin signalling in dopaminergic neurons and in altered behavioural responses to social novelty tests in mice. Notably, loss of Nlgn3 is accompanied by a disruption of translation homeostasis in the ventral tegmental area. Treatment of Nlgn3-knockout mice with a new, highly specific, brain-penetrant inhibitor of MAP kinase-interacting kinases resets the translation of mRNA and restores oxytocin signalling and social novelty responses. Thus, this work identifies a convergence between the genetic autism risk factor Nlgn3, regulation of translation, and oxytocinergic signalling. Focusing on such common core plasticity elements might provide a pragmatic approach to overcoming the heterogeneity of autism. Ultimately, this would enable mechanism-based stratification of patient populations to increase the success of therapeutic interventions.

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7. Hosozawa M, Sacker A, Cable N. Timing of diagnosis, depression and self-harm in adolescents with autism spectrum disorder. Autism ;2020 (Aug 8):1362361320945540.

Children with autism spectrum disorder are at increased risk of depression and self-harming behaviours. The question of whether timing of diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder is associated with these consequences in adolescence has not yet been studied. This exploratory study aimed to explore the association between depression and self-harming behaviour in adolescence and the parent-reported timing of diagnosis for autism spectrum disorder using a large population-based cohort in the United Kingdom. Most of the children with autism spectrum disorder in our study had within-typical-range cognitive ability. We found a linear association between timing of autism spectrum disorder diagnosis and depression and self-harming behaviour in adolescence ; later diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder, particularly diagnosis in adolescence, was associated with the increased risk of self-reported depressive symptoms and self-harming behaviour in adolescence among children with autism spectrum disorder. Our findings, albeit observational, suggest that interventions targeting the earlier diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder and approaches to improve person-environment fit may help prevent secondary mental health problems in this population, particularly among those without cognitive delays and those diagnosed late. Further studies replicating across a wider intellectual spectrum and clarifying the underlying mechanism are warranted.

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8. Khalili Alashti S, Fallahi J, Jokar A, Fardaei M. CRISPR/Cas9 knock-in toward creating a Rett syndrome cell model with a synonymous mutation in the MECP2 gene. J Gene Med ;2020 (Aug 6):e3258.

BACKGROUND : Rett syndrome is an X-linked dominant neurodevelopmental disease caused by mutation in Methyl-CpG-binding protein 2 (MECP2) gene. This gene encodes a methylated DNA-binding protein, which acts as a transcriptional regulatory factor. The aim of this study was to establish a cell model of Rett syndrome with the MECP2 synonymous mutation c.354G> T (p.Gly118Gly). In addition, the molecular mechanism of pathogenesis of this mutation was also investigated. METHODS : To create a cell line containing the synonymous variant in MECP2 locus, the clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR)/Cas9-mediated homology-directed repair precise gene editing method was used. In addition, by the synthesis of cDNA, the effect of this variant on splicing was investigated. RESULTS : Using this model and molecular analysis, we identified that c.354G>T synonymous variant created a novel 5’ cryptic splice donor site within the exon 3 of MECP2 gene, which resulted in a deletion of 25 nucleotides in the 3’ end of exon 3 and presumably protein truncation. CONCLUSIONS : The findings obtained in the present study show that apparently neutral synonymous polymorphism, which may be commonly classified as non-pathogenic, may indeed be led to creating an aberrant splice site, thereby resulting in disease.

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9. McCleery JP, Zitter A, Solórzano R, Turnacioglu S, Miller JS, Ravindran V, Parish-Morris J. Safety and feasibility of an immersive virtual reality intervention program for teaching police interaction skills to adolescents and adults with autism. Autism Res ;2020 (Aug 6)

Low-cost, wireless immersive virtual reality (VR) holds significant promise as a flexible and scalable intervention tool to help individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) learn and develop critical practical life skills, including interacting safely and effectively with police officers. Previous research suggests that VR is a motivating intervention platform, but many individuals with ASD also exhibit anxiety and sensory sensitivities which might make it difficult to tolerate VR experiences. Here, we describe the results of a relatively large-scale, National Institutes of Health-funded systematic examination of the safety, feasibility, and usability of an immersive VR training program in adolescents and adults with ASD, aged 12 and older. Sixty verbally fluent individuals with no personal or immediate family history of seizures or migraines participated in either one (n = 30) or three 45-min (n = 30) VR sessions using a lightweight wireless headset, and were monitored for side effects. Participants also reported on system usability, enjoyment, and willingness to engage in further VR sessions. Results confirm that immersive VR is safe, feasible, and highly usable for verbally fluent adolescents and adults with ASD. LAY SUMMARY : Immersive virtual reality (VR) holds promise as a means to provide social skills interventions for individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), but it is unclear whether associated anxiety and sensory symptoms might limit feasibility. Here, we report data that indicate that immersive VR is both safe and feasible for use in verbally fluent adolescents and adults with ASD, for up to three 45-min sessions.

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10. Nakata Y, Kanahara N, Kimura A, Niitsu T, Komatsu H, Oda Y, Ishikawa M, Hasegawa T, Kamata Y, Yamauchi A, Inazumi K, Kimura H, Iyo M. Autistic traits and cognitive profiles of treatment-resistant schizophrenia. Schizophr Res Cogn ;2020 (Dec) ;22:100186.

The complex pathophysiology of treatment-resistant schizophrenia (TRS) includes severe positive symptoms but also other symptom domains. The overlapping psychological profiles of schizophrenia and autistic spectrum disorder (ASD) are not established. We compared TRS patients (n = 30) with schizophrenia patients in remission (RemSZ, n = 28) and ASD patients (n = 28), focusing on both neurodevelopmental aspects and general and social cognitive impairments. The TRS group performed the worst on general neurocognition (measured by the MATRICS Consensus Cognitive Battery) and social cognition (measured by the theory of mind and emotional expression). The RemSZ group performed the best among the three groups. Regarding autistic traits, all measurements by the Autism-Spectrum Quotient/Autism Screening Questionnaire/Pervasive Developmental Disorder Assessment Rating Scale showed that (1) the ASD patients had the highest autistic traits (2) the TRS patients’ scores were less severe than the ASD group’s, but (3) the overall trends placed the TRS group between the ASD and the RemSZ group. These findings indicate that TRS patients and remitted patients could have distinctive neurodevelopmental and cognitive profiles. Further, the degrees of social cognitive dysfunction and autistic traits in TRS patients could be close to those of ASD patients, suggesting similarities between TRS and ASD.

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11. Niu Y, Cao L, Zhao P, Cai C. A case of congenital Rett variant in a Chinese patient caused by a FOXG1 mutation. Ann Saudi Med ;2020 (Jul-Aug) ;40(4):347-353.

Rett syndrome (RTT) is a severe progressive neurodevelopmental disease characterized by psychomotor regression. The FOXG1 gene is one of the pathogenic genes associated with the congenital Rett variant, which is less studied. Only a few Chinese patients with FOXG1 mutation have been reported. In this study, we describe a Chinese female patient with congenital Rett variant who presented with psycho-motor retardation, developmental regression, microcephaly, seizure, stereotypic hand movement and hypotonia. Targeted high-throughput sequencing was conducted, and a heterozygous FOXG1 mutation [NM_005249.4 : c.506dupG (P.G169Gfs* 286)] was identified. It was a frameshift mutation resulting in alteration of the reading frames downstream of the mutation. SIMILAR CASES PUBLISHED : 10. CONFLICT OF INTEREST : None.

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12. Paraschivescu C, Barbosa S, Lorivel T, Glaichenhaus N, Davidovic L. Cytokine changes associated with the maternal immune activation (MIA) model of autism : A penalized regression approach. PLoS One ;2020 ;15(8):e0231609.

Maternal immune activation (MIA) during pregnancy induces a cytokine storm that alters neurodevelopment and behavior in the progeny. In humans, MIA increases the odds of developing neuropsychiatric disorders such as autism spectrum disorder (ASD). In mice, MIA can be induced by injecting the viral mimic polyinosinic:polycytidylic acid (poly(I:C)) to pregnant dams. Although the murine model of MIA has been extensively studied, it is not clear whether MIA results in cytokine changes in the progeny at early postnatal stages. Further, the murine model of MIA suffers from a lack of reproducibility and high inter-individual variability. Multivariable (MV) statistical analysis is widely used in human studies to control for confounders and covariates such as sex, age and exposure to environmental factors. We therefore reasoned that animal studies in general and studies on the MIA model in particular could benefit from MV analyses to account for complex phenotype interactions and high inter-individual variability. Here, we used MV statistical analysis to identify cytokines associated with MIA after adjustment for covariates. Besides confirming the association between previously described variables and MIA, we identified new cytokines that could play a role in behavioural alterations in the progeny during the early postnatal period.

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13. van Kessel R, Steinhoff P, Varga O, Breznoščáková D, Czabanowska K, Brayne C, Baron-Cohen S, Roman-Urrestarazu A. Autism and education-Teacher policy in Europe : Policy mapping of Austria, Hungary, Slovakia and Czech Republic. Res Dev Disabil ;2020 (Aug 3) ;105:103734.

BACKGROUND : This report maps autism and special education needs (SEN) policies, alongside teacher responsibilities in the education of children with SEN in Austria, Hungary, Czech Republic, and Slovakia. METHODS AND PROCEDURE : A policy path analysis using a scoping review as an underlying methodological framework was performed. OUTCOMES AND RESULTS : The end of communism and accession to the European Union were critical for the countries under study. They passed crucial policies after international policies and adopted a three-stream approach towards providing education : (1) special schools ; (2) special classes in mainstream schools ; or (3) mainstream classes. Special schools remain for children that cannot participate in mainstream schools. Teachers are given high levels of responsibility. CONCLUSION AND IMPLICATIONS : Changes in international guidance greatly impacted Austria, Hungary, Slovakia and the Czech Republic. The education systems aim for inclusion, though segregation remains for children that cannot thrive in mainstream schools. Teachers are pivotal in the education of children with SEN, more so than with typical children.

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14. Vuillier L, Carter Z, Teixeira AR, Moseley RL. Alexithymia may explain the relationship between autistic traits and eating disorder psychopathology. Mol Autism ;2020 (Aug 5) ;11(1):63.

BACKGROUND : Autistic people are disproportionately vulnerable to anorexia nervosa and other eating disorders (ED), and within the general population, autistic traits correlate with ED psychopathology. A putative mechanism which may underpin this heightened risk is alexithymia, a difficulty identifying and describing emotional states which is observed in both autism and ED. In two experiments with independent non-clinical samples, we explored whether alexithymia might mediate the heightened risk of eating psychopathology in individuals high in autistic traits. METHODS : Our first experiment used the PROCESS macro for SPSS to examine relationships between alexithymia (measured by the Toronto Alexithymia Scale (TAS-20)), autistic traits (autism quotient (AQ)), and eating psychopathology (Eating Attitudes Test (EAT-26)) in 121 participants. Our second experiment (n = 300) replicated and furthered this analysis by examining moderating effects of sex and controlling for anxiety and depression as covariates. We also included an additional performance-based measure of alexithymia, the Levels of Emotional Awareness Scale (LEAS). RESULTS : Study 1 suggested that TAS-20 scores mediated the relationship between heightened autistic traits and eating psychopathology. Replication and further scrutiny of this finding, in study 2, revealed that this mediation effect was partial and specific to the female participants in this sample. The mediation effect appeared to be carried by the difficulty identifying feelings subscale of the TAS-20, even when depression and anxiety were controlled for. LEAS scores, however, were not significantly related to autistic traits or eating psychopathology. LIMITATIONS : Cross-sectional data prevents any conclusions around the direction and causality of relationships between alexithymia, autistic traits, and eating psychopathology (alongside depression and anxiety), necessitating longitudinal research. Our non-clinical sample was predominantly Caucasian undergraduate students, so it remains to be seen if these results would extrapolate to clinical and/or autistic samples. Divergence between the TAS-20 and LEAS raises crucial questions regarding the construct validity of these measures. CONCLUSIONS : Our findings with respect to autistic traits suggest that alexithymia could partially explain the prevalence of ED in autistic people and may as such be an important consideration in the pathogenesis and treatment of ED in autistic and non-autistic people alike. Further research with clinical samples is critical to explore these ideas. Differences between men and women, furthermore, emphasize the importance of looking for sex-specific as well as generic risk factors in autistic and non-autistic men and women.

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15. Vyas Y, Lee K, Jung Y, Montgomery JM. Influence of maternal zinc supplementation on the development of autism-associated behavioural and synaptic deficits in offspring Shank3-knockout mice. Mol Brain ;2020 (Aug 5) ;13(1):110.

Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) are characterised by deficits in social interactions and repetitive behaviours. Multiple ASD-associated mutations have been identified in the Shank family of proteins that play a critical role in the structure and plasticity of glutamatergic synapses, leading to impaired synapse function and the presentation of ASD-associated behavioural deficits in mice. Shank proteins are highly regulated by zinc, where zinc binds the Shank SAM domain to drive synaptic protein recruitment and synaptic maturation. Here we have examined the influence of maternal dietary zinc supplementation during pregnancy and lactation on the development of ASD-associated behavioural and synaptic changes in the offspring Shank3 knockout (Shank3(-/-)) mice. Behavioural and electrophysiological experiments were performed in juvenile and adult Shank3(-/-) and wildtype littermate control mice born from mothers fed control (30 ppm, ppm) or supplemented (150 ppm) dietary zinc. We observed that the supplemented maternal zinc diet prevented ASD-associated deficits in social interaction and normalised anxiety behaviours in Shank3(-/-) offspring mice. These effects were maintained into adulthood. Repetitive grooming was also prevented in adult Shank3(-/-) offspring mice. At the synaptic level, maternal zinc supplementation altered postsynaptic NMDA receptor-mediated currents and presynaptic function at glutamatergic synapses onto medium spiny neurons in the cortico-striatal pathway of the Shank3(-/-) offspring mice. These data show that increased maternal dietary zinc during pregnancy and lactation can alter the development of ASD-associated changes at the synaptic and the behavioural levels, and that zinc supplementation from the beginning of brain development can prevent ASD-associated deficits in Shank3(-/-) mice long term.

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16. Ward EK, Braukmann R, Buitelaar JK, Hunnius S. No evidence for neural markers of gaze direction adaptation in 2-year-olds with high or low likelihood of autism. J Abnorm Psychol ;2020 (Aug) ;129(6):612-623.

Predictive processing accounts of autism posit that individuals with autism rely less on expectations than those without autism when it comes to interpreting incoming sensory information. Since these expectations are claimed to underlie all information processing, we reason that any differences in how they are formed or adjusted should be persistent across multiple cognitive domains and detectable much earlier than clinicians can currently diagnose autism, around 3 years of age. This experiment is part of a longitudinal prospective study of young children with increased familial likelihood of autism. Around 20% of these children will receive an autism diagnosis, compared to 1% of the general population. The current electroencephalography study used an adaptation paradigm to investigate whether a reduced effect of expectations is already present in high-likelihood 2-year-olds, before autism can reliably be diagnosed. While we did not observe the adaptation aftereffect we expected, high-likelihood children habituated more than low-likelihood children, and the two groups did not differ in their overall responses to the manipulation, contrary to our hypotheses and previous findings. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2020 APA, all rights reserved).

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17. Warren N, Eatchel B, Kirby AV, Diener M, Wright C, D’Astous V. Parent-identified strengths of autistic youth. Autism ;2020 (Aug 5):1362361320945556.

Autism is a condition frequently characterized by social and communication challenges. Because most research focuses on understanding and reducing challenges, less is known about the strengths of autistic individuals. This is especially true of those who are transitioning into adulthood. We designed this research study to provide information about how parents perceive the strengths of their autistic adolescent children prior to the transition. We reviewed 39 parent interviews from previous research about how they prepare their autistic sons and daughters for adulthood. Without prompting, parents identified many strengths of their autistic children. Diverse strengths and skills they identified included intelligence, creativity, physical abilities, and self-care skills. These strengths are interesting, as they cover traits that are often thought of as areas of difficulty for autistic youth. However, parents also talked about strengths alongside challenges, and how specific supports would be needed to help their sons and daughters fully realize their strengths. These findings are important, as they help us know more about the strengths of autistic youth and how strengths can be supported when preparing for adulthood. Our findings also help reveal strengths that are particularly apparent during the transition to adulthood.

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18. Xie Q, Li Z, Wang Y, Zaidi S, Baranova A, Zhang F, Cao H. Preeclampsia Drives Molecular Networks to Shift Toward Greater Vulnerability to the Development of Autism Spectrum Disorder. Front Neurol ;2020 ;11:590.

Preeclampsia (PE) confers a significant risk for subsequent diagnosis with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), with the mechanisms underlying this observation being largely unknown. To identify molecular networks affected by both PE and ASD, we conducted a large-scale literature data mining and a gene set enrichment analysis (GSEA), followed by an expression mega-analysis in 13 independently profiled ASD datasets. Sets of genes implicated in ASD and in PE significantly overlap (156 common genes ; p = 3.14E(-67)), with many biological pathways shared (94 pathways ; p < 1.00E(-21)). A set of PE-driven molecular triggers possibly contributing to worsening the risk of subsequent ASD was identified, possibly representing a regulatory shift toward greater vulnerability to the development of ASD. Mega-analysis of expression highlighted RPS4Y1, an inhibitor of STAT3 that is expressed in a sexually dimorphic manner, as a contributor to both PE and ASD, which should be evaluated as a possible contributor to male predominance in ASD. A set of PE-driven molecular triggers may shift the developing brain toward a greater risk of ASD. One of these triggers, chromosome Y encoded gene RPS4Y1, an inhibitor of STAT3 signaling, warrants evaluation as a possible contributor to male predominance in ASD.

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