Roberto Canitano

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BACKGROUND 22q13 deletion syndrome, also known as Phelan-McDermid syndrome, is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by intellectual disability, hypotonia, delayed or absent speech, and autistic features. SHANK3 has been identified as the critical gene in the neurological and behavioral aspects of this syndrome. The phenotype of SHANK3 deficiency has(More)
Epilepsy is quite common in autism spectrum disorders, and it is increasingly recognized as an additional clinical problem that must be dealt with. The rate of comorbidity varies, depending upon the age and type of disorder, and currently the conservative estimate of comorbidity cases is 20–25% of the whole spectrum. Major risk factors for seizure(More)
Mutations in MECP2 gene account for approximately 80% of cases of Rett syndrome (RTT), an X-linked severe developmental disorder affecting young girls, as well as for most cases of Preserved Speech Variant (PSV), a mild RTT variant in which autistic behavior is common. The aim of this study is to determine whether MECP2 mutations are responsible for PSV(More)
Self injurious behavior (SIB) is frequent in autistic spectrum disorders. The aim of this study was to investigate the phenomenology of SIB in a group of children with autistic disorder, and to test whether treatment with risperidone might reduce it. A group of eleven children diagnosed with autistic disorder according to the DSM-IV criteria (mean age(More)
We present here a unique case of a 14-year-old female with autism and some features similar to Rett syndrome (RTT). Genetic analysis demonstrated a large deletion of chromosome 2q instead of a MECP2 mutation. Like a Rett patient, she is dyspraxic and shows frequent hand-washing stereotypic activities, hyperpnea, and bruxism. Like a preserved speech variant(More)
Current therapeutics in autism spectrum disorders (ASD) only treat the associated symptoms, without addressing core social dysfunctions. A paradigm shift in research of the pathogenesis of ASD, its synaptic abnormalities and altered signaling in multiple dynamic systems, have led to new experimental treatments for treating the core social abnormalities of(More)
The association of epilepsy and autism is recognized, and it has been reported at a percentage that varies between 8 and 42%, depending on age and diagnostic criteria. One third of autistic children undergo a regression of language and behavior between 2 and 3 years, and epileptiform abnormalities and epilepsy can be concomitant in an undetermined(More)
Autism spectrum disorders are characterized by impairment in social reciprocity, disturbances in language and communication, restricted interests and repetitive behaviors of various types, as defined by the DSM-IV. The neurobiological bases of these disorders are poorly understood, although several abnormalities have been found. Pharmacotherapy in autism(More)
Autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) are more frequently associated with tic disorders than expected by chance. Variable rates of comorbidity have been reported and common genetic and neurobiological factors are probably involved. The aim of this study was to determine the rate of tic disorders in a clinical sample (n = 105) of children and adolescents with(More)
Autism spectrum disorders (ASD) and schizophrenia spectrum disorders (SSD) share clinical and genetic components that have long been recognized. The two disorders co-occur more frequently than would be predicted by their respective prevalence, suggesting that a complex, multifactor association is involved. However, DSM-5 maintains the distinction between(More)