FOXP1 gene; dose effect of neurodevelopmental conditions; transcriptomics in mouse model of autism

Here is a roundup of autism-related news and research spotted around the web for the week of 1 July.

  • Structural differences in temporal, fusiform and inferior frontal regions of the brain—assessed with MRI—appear to be predictive of later language skills in autistic toddlers. Nature Communications
  • Mice missing the autism-linked gene FOXP1 display altered cell maturation and cell cycling during early development, which may explain resulting changes in cortical structures, according to a preprint. bioRxiv
  • Children with more than one neurodevelopmental condition generally have more attention, social and functional difficulties than their peers with one diagnosis. Journal of Intellectual Disability Research
Research image showing the number of unique SHANK3 transcripts in mice.
Dynamic development: The number of distinct SHANK3 transcripts (columns) in mice peaks at postnatal day 56 (second to bottom row); the timeline goes from embryonic day 14 (top row) to postnatal day 180 (bottom row).
  • Transcriptomes from mice carrying variants of the SHANK3 gene, a model of autism, and postmortem brains from autistic people show “unprecedented” diversity. Cell Reports
  • Neural stem cells can model the dynamics of gene expression very early in development and can show how genes linked to neurodevelopmental conditions alter those dynamics, according to a preprint. bioRxiv

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