Pregnancy

Illustration of a conveyor belt spilling pills over a green cliff face.

Acetaminophen use during pregnancy does not increase child’s chance of having autism, study finds

The link reported in prior studies likely reflects confounding factors, which sibling-matched controls in the new work address.

By Calli McMurray
9 April 2024 | 7 min read
A research image of a mouse brain

Immune-activation model mice escape infantile amnesia, retain early memories

Male pups born to mothers treated with immune-stimulating molecules show autism-like behaviors and, unlike wildtype animals, do not lose memories formed during early life.

By Giorgia Guglielmi
11 January 2024 | 5 min read
Illustration of hybrid objects: part light bulb, part lab vial, some in blue and some in red to signify null and replicated results.

The true meaning of a null result

This edition of Null and Noteworthy highlights results that reveal the difficulty in drawing definitive conclusions from data, including new findings about epidurals that contradict several others and an apparent null result on sex differences that may derive from “circular logic.”

By Laura Dattaro
14 August 2023 | 4 min read
A multiplexed image of human decidua.

Atlas charts cells of human placenta, uterus across early pregnancy

A new resource gives an unparalleled look at how fetal placental cells attach to the uterine wall and remodel maternal blood vessels to access nutrients.

By Emily Hayes
27 July 2023 | 4 min read
Illustration of half of a brain on the left and half of a heart on the right
Spectrum Microphone

Change of heart and mind: Autism’s ties to cardiac defects

Children with congenital heart disease have an increased likelihood of autism. Why?

By Lauren Schenkman
21 July 2023 | 12 min read
Illustration of hybrid objects: part light bulb, part lab vial, some in blue and some in red to signify null and replicated results.

Prenatal exposures; Angelman trial suspension; autistic adult well-being

This month’s issue of the Null and Noteworthy newsletter breaks down some negative results involving prenatal exposures, an experimental treatment for Angelman syndrome, and the role that age at autism diagnosis plays in subsequent outcomes, and more.

By Emily Harris
17 July 2023 | 4 min read
A woman stands by a window while talking on the phone and holding a pill bottle.

Evidence linking acetaminophen to autism, ADHD under debate again

As acetaminophen lawsuits make their way through the U.S. court system, researchers reevaluate the quality of the evidence linking in-utero exposure to the painkiller to neurodevelopmental issues in children.

By Teresa Carr, Undark
12 July 2023 | 18 min read
A pregnant woman takes a pill.
Spectrum Microphone

Acetaminophen on trial over possible links to autism, ADHD

More than 100 parents who used the drug during pregnancy claim it caused their child’s autism or attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, although the science behind the allegations is murky.

By Laura Dattaro
26 April 2023 | 4 min read
Image of an epidural being administered.
Spectrum Microphone

A questionable study linked epidurals to autism. Then what?

Researchers and clinicians were quick to point out the flaws in the study, and a flood of work refuted it.

By Laura Dattaro
18 April 2023 | 9 min read
Research image of the posterior insular cortex.

Maternal immune response dulls male rats’ social radar

Male rats prenatally exposed to a maternal immune response have atypical responses to other rats in distress, according to a new study.

By Angie Voyles Askham
27 March 2023 | 5 min listen

Explore more from The Transmitter

Brain organoids overgrowth; DSCAM gene; sleep issues in autism

Here is a roundup of autism-related news and research spotted around the web for the week of 24 June.

By Jill Adams
25 June 2024 | 2 min read
Close-up image of a dead fly with visible growths protruding from its abdomen due to Entomophthora fungus infection.

Mind control in zombie flies: Q&A with Carolyn Elya

A parasitic fungus compels its insect host to behave in strange ways by hijacking secretory neurons and circadian pathways.

By Shaena Montanari
25 June 2024 | 5 min read
Illustration of a canyon landscape with an orange clock face in place of a sun.

How to teach this paper: ‘Behavioral time scale synaptic plasticity underlies CA1 place fields,’ by Bittner and Milstein et al. (2017)

Katie Bittner, Aaron Milstein and their colleagues found that cellular learning can happen over longer timescales than Hebb’s rule predicts. How long should we wait to teach students about this phenomenon?

By Ashley Juavinett
24 June 2024 | 11 min read