Navigation Links
Dual approach gives a more accurate picture of the autistic brain
Date:4/13/2010

This press release is available in French.

A new study, the first of its kind, combines two complementary analytical brain imaging techniques, to provide a more comprehensive and accurate picture of the neuroanatomy of the autistic brain. The study, published in the April issue of neuroimaging journal Human Brain Mapping, was conducted by researchers at The Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital The Neuro, McGill University and the Universit de Montral. The findings provide critical insight into autism and possible markers for the disease for use in early therapy and therapeutic strategies.

Autism is a complex spectrum disorder thought to affect 1 in 166 people. Autistic individuals have difficulties with social interaction, communication and repetitive behaviours, which can lead to isolation and emotional problems. They may also have enhanced abilities particularly in auditory and visual perception.

Although structural brain differences have been reported in autism, the reports are inconsistent. The Neuro research team's objective therefore was to investigate neuroanatomical differences using a dual-analytic approach, combining cortical thickness analysis (CT) and voxel-based morphometry (VBM) together for the first time in the same participants. The team studied a group of young adults with autism of average intelligence and similar language ability relative to closely matched typically developing controls.

"The findings are significant from a functional perspective because the anatomical differences are found in brain regions known to play a functional role in the core features of autism such as social communication and repetitive behaviours, says Dr. Krista Hyde, research fellow with Dr. Alan Evans at The Neuro, and lead investigator in the study. "This is the first step to looking for clues or markers that would help us correlate structural differences with functional and behavioural characteristics."

The advantage in analyzing brain anatomy using CT and VBM is the complementary nature of the two methods, which in combination provide a direct measure of cortical grey matter, regions of the brain that consist primarily of nerve cell bodies. The combined method also provides a measure of subcortical grey matter as well as white matter, regions of the brain composed mainly of nerve cell fibres which have myelin sheaths, the protective covering that insulates and supports nerve cells. "The converging results found from CT and VBM analysis, allows us to make more confident interpretations about the structural brain differences found in autism," adds Dr. Hyde.

Regional differences in grey matter were found in socially-relevant and communication-related brain areas, as well as in areas implicated in repetitive behaviours and those found to play a role in empathic behavior. The study also identifies grey matter increases in autism in the visual cortex and for the first time, in the primary auditory cortex. "We believe that the visual and auditory cortical thickness increases may be related to enhanced visual and auditory perception in autism."

"These new results are extremely important because they offer a more accurate picture of the autistic brain, helping researchers improve early autism treatment strategies," says Dr. Anthony Phillips, Scientific Director of the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) Institute of Neurosciences, Mental Health and Addiction. "Autism rates have been rising steadily in Canada, so CIHR is proud to support researchers who devote their time to look into this neurological condition."

The study's findings provide vital insight into autism by identifying structural differences in functionally relevant areas of the brain in a group of individuals with autism using a dual analytic approach for the first time.


'/>"/>

Contact: Anita Kar
anita.kar@mcgill.ca
514-295-3870
McGill University
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Layered approach may yield stronger, more successful bone implants
2. Selexis Announces Advanced Approach to Maximize Power of Genetic Elements for Rapid Development of High Performance Cell Lines
3. Book on weeds and invasive plants discusses how to manage them using ecological approaches
4. New thoracic imaging approach can pinpoint underlying venous problems
5. Gold nanorods shed light on new approach to fighting cancer
6. Deadlines for 2007 National Soybean Rust Symposium fast approaching
7. New approach builds better proteins inside a computer
8. Raydiance collaborates with Rutgers, MTF to develop innovative tissue processing approaches
9. New approach for attacking lupus identified
10. Scientists outline novel approach to ecosystem management
11. MIT applies engineering approach to studying biological pathways
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:4/19/2017)... ALBANY, New York , April 19, 2017 /PRNewswire/ ... highly competitive, as its vendor landscape is marked by ... in the market is however held by five major ... and Safran. Together these companies accounted for nearly 61% ... majority of the leading companies in the global military ...
(Date:4/17/2017)... NXT-ID, Inc. (NASDAQ: NXTD ) ("NXT-ID" ... its 2016 Annual Report on Form 10-K on Thursday April 13, ... ... the Investor Relations section of the Company,s website at http://www.nxt-id.com ... http://www.sec.gov . 2016 Year Highlights: ...
(Date:4/13/2017)... According to a new market research report "Consumer IAM Market by ... Service, Authentication Type, Deployment Mode, Vertical, and Region - Global Forecast to ... USD 14.30 Billion in 2017 to USD 31.75 Billion by 2022, at ... ... MarketsandMarkets Logo ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:4/26/2017)... Myrtle Beach, SC (PRWEB) , ... April 26, ... ... for the mind, has teamed up with NASA to showcase the future of ... NASA’s Space Launch System (SLS) rocket and Orion spacecraft and includes a guest ...
(Date:4/26/2017)... RESTON, Va. (PRWEB) , ... April 26, 2017 ... ... to make headlines and drive high-level conversations among healthcare industry stakeholders, the discussion ... Healthcare Environment – taking place May 15-18, 2017 in Los Angeles, Calif. Hosted ...
(Date:4/25/2017)... PROVIDENCE, R.I. , April 25, 2017 /PRNewswire/ ... EpiVax, Inc. ("EpiVax") has licensed its novel immune-modulating technology ... in autoimmune disease and allergy. Tregitopes, ... discovered in human immunoglobulin by EpiVax CEO ... Martin. Similar to intravenous immunoglobulin G, an autoimmune ...
(Date:4/24/2017)... April 24, 2017  Dante Labs announced today the offer ... 850 (ca. $900). While American individuals have been able to ... Europeans can access WGS below EUR 1,000. The ... leveraging genetic information to make informed decisions about disease monitoring, ... ...
Breaking Biology Technology: