Autism Research

How can we detect early stages of autism in young people?

The Study and Treatment of a Young Child Diagnosed with Autism

Interacting and teaching children who have been diagnosed with Autism as an effective treatment:

Understand who the child is, their triggers, current skills, general learning "readiness"

Early development skills and Motor development skills

Motivating the Child

Encouraging the child to engage in conversations with other peers or adults

Look for child's ability to learn/"pick up" new skills

Encourage team building

Positive parental interaction with the child as they learn

Identify the child's understanding of spoken language

Witness how the child communicates, Ex. gestures to objects or words

Educational activities to teach an autistic child:

Identifying educational objects the child will respond to

The child's preferred activities that motivate them

If the child is doing well with an educational activity give them reinforcers and praise, for example snacks and small toys to play with

"Incidental" teaching activities would be more educationally appropriate for a toddler, verses instructions and more verbal interaction for a child who is around 5

Identify if the child is willing to attend to their skills

Vocabulary:

Autism- A brain condition in which the person finds it difficult and struggles to communicate with other people. They also have trouble forming relationships and using appropriate language with others. These symptoms appear around the ages of 2 or 3 years of age.

Intellectual Disability: Is a limitation in both learning functions (reasoning, problem solving) and difficulty in adapting behavior which ranges in everyday social and practical skills.

Genotyping- Is what researchers do to determine the differences in people's genetic make up by studying their DNA. Therefore if you take the genotype of a child with autism and compare it with someone else, there will be differences in the genetic make up.

Breakthrough Gene Studies on Autism within the Brain

What researcher's have discovered so far:

Gene prioritization like genotyping and characterization of certain cells such as the "CNV" cell which is very common in autistic individuals

Linking certain cells to autism

The CNV cell is not commonly found in non mentally disabled people because it is such a rare cell

Although this cell isn't only linked to autism

Theses cells can be linked to people who have other brain disorders

Brain disorders such as Alzheimer's disease, anxiety disorders, epilepsy, multiple scleroses and schizophrenia

Autistic individuals have a much slower "Neuroactive receptor interaction pathway"

Several metabolic pathways such as drug metabolism and caffeine metabolism in autistic people were discovered to be affected by the rare CNVs.

Treatment

Although there is still no specific medicine or medical cure to autism, there are still many ways to treat it. Through research and educational techniques autism can be dealt with and treated in a very positive way. By not getting angry or upset at the child for their disorder, but helping them understand what it is and what the child themselves can do to help understand everyday life. Parents of children with autism should encourage and interact with their child through healthy communication that will better the child as a person. Always be aware of the signs of autism in a young child so they can get the medical and educational treatment they need.

World Autism Awareness Day video - Autism Ontario - Niagara