Toddler brain difference linked to autism

Discussion in 'Health and Lifestyle' started by strollingbones, May 5, 2009.

  1. strollingbones
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    strollingbones Diamond Member

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    By Danielle Dellorto
    CNN Medical Producer

    (CNN) -- The size of a specific part of the brain may help experts pinpoint when autism could first develop, University of North Carolina researchers report.


    The amygdala helps individuals process faces and emotions.

    Using MRI brain scans, researchers found that the area of the brain called the amygdala was, on average, 13 percent larger in young children with autism, compared with control group of children without autism. In the study, published in the latest Archives of General Psychiatry, researchers scanned 50 toddlers with autism and 33 children without autism at age 2 and again at age 4. The study adjusted for age, sex and IQ.

    "We believe that children with autism have normal-sized brains at birth but at some point, in the latter part of the first year of life, it [the amygdala] begins to grow in kids with autism. And this study gives us insight inside the underlying brain mechanism so we can design more rational interventions," said lead study author Dr. Joseph Piven.

    A normal-sized amygdala helps a person process faces and emotions, behavior commonly known as joint attention.

    "When you see a face, you scan it, identify if it's friend or foe and make a decision about whether to move forward or avoid it," said Dr. Barry Kosofsky, chief of neurology at Cornell Medical Center, who was not affiliated with the study.



    Toddler brain difference linked to autism - CNN.com
     
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  2. editec
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    editec Mr. Forgot-it-All

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    I'm actually beginning to wonder if the Autistic aren't really the next model of humanity.

    Humans without emotional baggage can be very effective as prodcutive members of society, folks.

    Their major problem is that the rest of us can't deal with their apparent lack of emotional intelligence.

    I know at least two kids with asbergers syndome who are very talented, highly intelligent hard working people.

    They support themselves, one going so far as to be the major breadwinner who is helping his mother support his siblings.

    The kid describes himself as a lizard.

    The only flaw in my theory is that these people seem completely indifferent to sex.

    Obviously no species which isn't driven to spawn is going to last very long.
     
  3. Zoom-boing
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    Zoom-boing Gold Member

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    You know two people with Aspergers sydrome and based on this, think being autistic might be the next model of humanity? You do realize that autism is a spectrum disorder, yes? I think you should spend some time with autistic individuals of all degrees before making such statements.
     
  4. jillian
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    jillian Princess Supporting Member

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    It's my understanding that Apsberger's kids are often sexually precocious

    FWIW, there are those who think Bill Gates has Apsbergers....
     
  5. editec
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    editec Mr. Forgot-it-All

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    Yeah, I understand your point. Of course that's exactly why I used the words

    To announce that my post was highly speculative.

    Asbergers syndrome is far different than Autism.

    But basically that's a matter of degree, isn't it?

    My point is that Ashberger syndrome is manifesting so often, now, that I'm beginning to wonder of this event isn't a new species evolving out of our own.

    A species of mankind which is less emcumbered with emotional baggage might, if it became more common, a very successful species that could easily replace us.

    I find it highly unlikely that mankind (sans highly charged emotional baggage) would build tens of thousands of nuclear weapons capable of destroying life on earth over some minor issue involving economic issues.

    Pure specullation on my part of course, but nature keeps trying out new models most of which don't work and fade.

    But these asberger kids seem to be able to cohabit with us, yet from a pure humanistic standpoint, they're not much like us.
     
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  6. random3434
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    random3434 Senior Member

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  7. Zoom-boing
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    Zoom-boing Gold Member

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    Ed, it's Asperger not Asberger.
     
    Last edited: May 5, 2009
  8. editec
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    editec Mr. Forgot-it-All

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    Yeah, thanks, Zoom.

    I can get pretty sloppy when I'm on a writing jag.
     
  9. Zoom-boing
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    Zoom-boing Gold Member

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    Ed, out of curiosity are you the parent of an autistic or asperger child or do you work with them?
     

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