Navigation Links
Research may unlock mystery of autism's origin in the brain
Date:8/22/2007

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. In the first study of its kind, researchers have discovered that in autistic individuals, connections between brain cells may be deficient within single regions, and not just between regions, as was previously believed.

Tony Wilson, Ph.D., lead researcher and assistant professor of neurology at Wake Forest University School of Medicine, said he hopes this study will eventually lead to earlier diagnosis and more targeted medications for autism.

Using magnetoencephalography (MEG) brain imaging technology to measure brain electrical activity, the researchers administered a test called the 40 hertz (cycles per second) auditory steady-state response test. The test measures electromagnetic wave cycles and indicates brain cell discharges at the 40 hertz frequency.

This test measures the brains capacity to mimic what its hearing. A healthy brains cells will fire back at 40 hertz, said Wilson. We chose this test because it is a robust metric of how well individual circuits are functioning.

The results were reported in this months issue of Biological Psychiatry.

A group of 10 children and adolescents with autism, and 10 without autism, listened to a series of clicks occurring every 25 milliseconds (ms) for a duration of 500 ms. The MEG measured the brains responses to these clicks.

In the right hemisphere of the brain, which controls attention and spatial processing, there was no significant difference in the groups. But the results showed a considerable discrepancy between the two groups in the left hemisphere, the area of the brain that controls language and logic.

In the auditory area of the left hemisphere, the group without autism delivered a brain response to the 40 hertz stimulation 200 ms after it began. However, the group with autism failed to respond entirely at the same 40 hertz frequency.

Our results made sense. Both anecdotal and behavioral evidence suggest children with autism have significantly disturbed brain circuits on the local-level within an individual brain area, said Wilson. For example, they tend to restrict their visual gaze to a part of someones face, like a nose or an eye, but not the persons whole face.

The results also support previous research that showed disconnections between two or more brain regions, known as long-range connectivity. This new study supports the idea that the network as a whole is broken, but shows the disconnection in long-range connectivity may actually start within individual brain regions, known as local connectivity.

Wilson explains the difference between local and long-range connectivity using vision as an example. With vision, one part of your brain identifies color, another perceives motion. Within each of these areas of your brain, there is local connectivity between brain cells that allow the region to do its job. When you see a red ball flying across the room, both of these areas of your brain start communicating with each other and put together flying and red as qualities of the same ball. Thats long-range connectivity.

Wilson conducted the autism research while at the University of Colorado, but says he hopes to continue his autism research at Wake Forest.

I chose Wake Forest because it has one of the most advanced MEGs in the country. Here, we can study the brain at a very precise level, said Wilson.


'/>"/>
Contact: Shannon Koontz
shkoontz@wfubmc.edu
336-716-2415
Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Kidney Stones - Interesting New Research implicates bacteria as its cause
2. Stem cell research- now Nobel Laureates join the debate
3. Researchers urge caution in using ear tube surgery
4. Paracetamol May Cause Live Damage Warns Consumer Education and Research Centre
5. Spouses and other partners lower blood pressure says new research
6. Researchers Scale to assess the Severity of Epilepsy in Kids
7. Ecstasy shrinks brain!!-researchers unveil the secrets of MDMA.
8. Research of Ritalin
9. New Hair in 15 Days Could Now Be A Possibility Say Researchers
10. Researchers at Cornell University as been reported using research fund by false claims
11. Better Research Rats To Help In Learning About Hypertension
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:10/12/2017)... WAUSAU, Wis. (PRWEB) , ... October 12, 2017 ... ... formulated standard products to meet the demand of today’s consumer and regulatory authorities ... team of probiotic experts and tested to meet the highest standard. , ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... ... The American College of Medical Informatics (ACMI) will present the 2017 Morris ... of AMIA’s Annual Symposium in Washington, D.C. AMIA’s Annual Symposium is taking ... in the field of medical informatics, this prestigious award is presented to an individual ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... Information about the ... to develop to enable prevention of a major side effect of chemotherapy in ... in pediatric patients. For cisplatin, hearing loss is FDA listed on-label as a ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... HMP , a leader in healthcare events ... Magazine Eddie Digital Award for ‘Best B-to-B Healthcare Website.’ Winners were announced during the ... The annual award competition recognizes editorial and design excellence across a range of sectors. ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... , ... October 12, 2017 , ... On Saturday, October ... treadmill relay – Miles by Moonlight to raise money for the American Heart Association ... more. , Teams will work together to keep their treadmills moving for 5 ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:9/18/2017)... , Pa. and KALAMAZOO, Mich. , Sept. ... Penn. , and OptiMed Specialty Pharmacy of ... partnership to offer a strategic hub service that expedites ... highly sought-after personal spirometer, Spiro PD 2.0, and wellness ... A spirometer is a medical device used to measure ...
(Date:9/13/2017)... has been named the official orthopedic and sports medicine ... 2018 College Football Playoff (CFP) National Championship to be played ... Atlanta, Georgia . OrthoAtlanta is proud to be ... many activities leading up to, and including the national championship ... OrthoAtlanta serves ...
(Date:9/12/2017)... reviews on the independent review site Consumer Affairs have ... hearing aids, ranking it higher than Miracle Ear ™, Beltone™, ... ... Aids ... that provides high performance, state-of-the-art, German-engineered hearing aids directly to consumers ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: