Last week CNN.com reported on a study that showed slight improvement of autism symptoms in children that received a single infusion of their own umbilical cord blood. While the study was interesting, the authors were the first to acknowledge the limitations, however, this did not stop the media from misrepresenting the results. Details are explained in this podcast. In addition, a big win this week for precision or personalized medicine: different symptoms and different genetic mutations are linked to different outcomes from different anti-seizure medications.
Last month, UC Davis researcher Cyndi Schumann used resources for the Autism BrainNet to look at what causes differences in the rates of diagnosis between males and females. Consistent with other studies on this topic, males and females don’t show differences in the rates of autism genes, but rather in the way that the brain controls other genes that code for things like neuroinflammation and development. Clearly more studies are necessary but it is consistent with the Female Protective Effect in autism. The full text can be found here: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5294827/
And also, there was a study on genital herpes and autism that CNN got totally wrong.