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Autism spectrum disorders (ASD) are a complex group of neurodevelopmental disorders encompassing impairments in communication, social interactions and restricted stereotypical behaviors. Although a link between altered immune responses and ASD was first recognized nearly 40 years ago, only recently has new evidence started to shed light on the complex(More)
It is becoming increasingly apparent that the causes of autism spectrum disorders (ASD) are due to both genetic and environmental factors. Animal studies provide important translational models for elucidating specific genetic or environmental factors that contribute to ASD-related behavioral deficits. For example, mouse research has demonstrated a link(More)
Autism is a complex and clinically heterogeneous disorder with a spectrum of symptoms. Clinicians, schools, and service agencies worldwide have reported a dramatic increase in the number of children identified with autism. Despite expanding research, the etiology and underlying biological processes of autism remain poorly understood, and the relative(More)
Autism spectrum disorders (ASD) are complex and heterogeneous with a spectrum of diverse symptoms. Mounting evidence from a number of disciplines suggests a link between immune function and ASD. Although the causes of ASD have yet to be identified, genetic studies have uncovered a host of candidate genes relating to immune regulation that are altered in(More)
Although autism is a behaviorally defined disorder, many studies report an association with increased pro-inflammatory cytokine production. Recent characterization of the BTBR T+tf/J (BTBR) inbred mouse strain has revealed several behavioral characteristics including social deficits, repetitive behavior, and atypical vocalizations which may be relevant to(More)
Autism spectrum disorders (ASD) are a group of disorders characterized by core behavioral features including stereotyped interests, repetitive behaviors and impairments in communication and social interaction. In addition, widespread changes in the immune systems of individuals with ASD have been identified, in particular increased evidence of inflammation(More)
BACKGROUND Atypical antipsychotics decrease irritability in autism. They also affect the cytokine network. Psychological stress, depression, and, possibly, autism spectrum disorder (ASD) are associated with the production of pro-inflammatory cytokines. We sought to determine if risperidone treatment led to changes in plasma cytokine levels. METHODS(More)
Cigarette smoke (CS) induces a rapid, sustained upregulation of ceramide production in human bronchial epithelial cells, leading to increased apoptosis. Using loss-of-function and overexpression analyses, we show that neutral sphingomyelinase 2 (nSMase2) is required for CS-mediated ceramide generation and apoptosis. Glutathione (GSH), a crucial antioxidant(More)
Several epidemiological studies have shown an association between infection or inflammation during pregnancy and increased risk of autism in the child. In addition, animal models have illustrated that maternal inflammation during gestation can cause autism-relevant behaviors in the offspring; so called maternal immune activation (MIA) models. More recently,(More)
Autophagy is responsible for the bulk degradation of cytoplasmic contents including organelles through the lysosomal machinery. Neonatal hypoxia-ischemia (HI) causes cell death in the brain by caspase-dependent and independent pathways. Ischemic insults also increase the formation of autophagosomes and activate autophagy. This study assessed the possible(More)