Diagnosis & Disease Information

Epilepsy Research

Epilepsy Research Opens a Window on the Brain

Rapidly emerging technologies, novel imaging techniques, and the development of new therapies and new genes have given researchers and clinicians an extraordinary ability to explore the brain at the cellular, genetic, and neural levels.

Neural Stem Cell Overgrowth

Study Finds Link Between Neural Stem Cell Overgrowth and Autism-Like Behavior in Mice

People with autism spectrum disorder often experience a period of accelerated brain growth after birth. No one knows why or whether the change is linked to any specific behavioral changes. A new study by UCLA researchers demonstrates how, in pregnant mice, inflammation, a first-line defense of the immune system, can trigger an excessive division of neural stem cells that can cause overgrowth in the offsprings brain. The paper appeared October 9 in the online edition of the journal Stem Cell Reports.

Lifetime Costs for Autism Spectrum Disorder

Lifetime Costs for Autism Spectrum Disorder May Reach $2.4 Million Per Patient

Costs for a life time of support for each individual with autism spectrum disorder may reach $2.4 million, according to a new study from researchers from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania and the Childrens Hospital of Philadelphia. In a study published online today in JAMA Pediatrics, the team found that costs for a person with ASD and an intellectual disability reaches $2.4 million in the United States and $2.2 million in the United Kingdom; costs for those who have ASD without an intellectual disability are estimated to cost $1.4 million in both the U.S. and the U.K.

Autism spectrum disorder is a neurodevelopmental condition that leads to significant social, communication and behavioral challenges. It commonly co-occurs with intellectual disability, a cognitive impairment that begins in childhood and causes below-average intellectual function and a lack of skills necessary for daily living.

The "City of Microbes" Within Our Bodies May Maintain Our Health

The “City of Microbes” Within Our Bodies May Maintain Our Health, Expert Says

There is a vast city hidden inside your body. You might not be directly aware of its inhabitants, but it’s quite likely you owe your health to them. These inhabitants are microbes, of course. Hundreds of species of them inhabit us, and the term “microbiome” refers to their collective genes. Even though scientists are just beginning to map it, many researchers believe the microbiome affects our health—and when it’s unbalanced it predisposes us to numerous autoimmune diseases. Is our sterile Western environment—which has rid our bodies of many kinds of bacteria—to blame for this?

Dolphin-Assisted Therapy

Dolphin-Assisted Therapy

Animal-assisted therapy (AAT) involves incorporating an animal into a person’s therapeutic process or treatment. Dolphins are an increasingly popular choice of ATT to address psychological problems and developmental disabilities, especially in children. A growing and controversial group of global entrepreneurs claim dolphin-assisted therapy (DAT) can help patients feel better by putting them in close contact with dolphins. There are now more than 100 organizations offering DAT around the globe in such widely scattered places as Florida, Hawaii, Mexico, Israel, Australia, and Ukraine.

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