Understanding Autism

Understanding Autism: From Basic Neuroscience to Treatment

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Features

  • Covers genetic and genomic technologies currently used to dissect the molecular basis of autism
  • Provides an exhaustive review of cytogenetic, linkage, association, candidate gene, and genetic mapping studies
  • Describes new approaches to the analysis of gene expression and the extension of current studies to include endophenotypes in families of autistic probands
  • Examines the potential role of epigenetic mechanisms in the etiology of autism through the regulation of gene expression by mechanisms that do not alter gene sequences
  • Includes current clinical findings that focus on neuroanatomy and neurochemistry, functional neuroimaging, structural neuroimaging, and neurophysiology and neuropsychology
  • Includes a theoretical and methodological outline of how to identify the public health costs of autism
  • Summary

    Taking an all-inclusive look at the subject, Understanding Autism: From Basic Neuroscience to Treatment reviews state-of-the-art research on the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of autism. The book addresses potential mechanisms that may underlie the development of autism and the neural systems that are likely to be affected by these molecular, genetic, and infectious etiologies. It reviews key findings that inform diagnosis, epidemiology, clinical neuroscience, and treatment.

    The book concludes with a discussion of the economic cost of autism and provides a biomedical and public health perspective of the impact of this devastating disease. With chapters authored by clinical and basic researchers at the forefront of molecular and systems neuroscience, clinical neuroscience, and health economics, the book presents a powerful and comprehensive synthesis of current research on autism and its underlying neural substrates. The book's two editors are considered elite pioneers in this area of research. Dr. Rubenstein was recently elected to the highly prestigious Institute of the Medicine, an honor reserved for those most committed to professional achievement and public service.

    Table of Contents

    Autism Spectrum Disorders: Phenotype and Diagnosis, C. Lord and S. Spence

    Past and Future Perspectives on Autism Epidemiology, E. Fombonne

    Genetic Basis of Autism, E. Bonora, J.A. Lamb, G. Barnby, A.J. Bailey, and A.P. Monaco

    Finding Genes in Spite of Heterogeneity: Endophenotypes, QTL Mapping, and Expression Profiling in Autism, D.H Geschwind and M. Alarcón

    A Mixed Epigenetic and Genetic and Mixed De Novo and Inherited Model for Autism, A.L. Beaudet and H.Y. Zoghbi

    Neurobiology of Related Disorders: Fragile X Syndrome, U. Narayanan and S.T. Warren

    Fear and Anxiety Pathways, K.S. LaBar and J.E. LeDoux

    Cerebellar Networks and Autism: An Anatomical Hypothesis, R.P. Dum and P.L. Strick

    Language in Autism, M. Walenski, H. Tager-Flusberg, and M.T. Ullman

    Prefrontal Cortex, J.L. Price

    The Social Brain, Amygdala, and Autism, C.M. Schumann, M.D. Bauman, C.J. Machado, and D.G. Amaral

    The Thalamus and Neuromodulatory Systems, M. Steriade

    Modeling Features of Autism in Animals, P.H. Patterson

    Neuroanatomical and Neurochemical Studies of the Autistic Brain: Current Thought and Future Directions, M.L. Bauman, G. Anderson, E. Perry, and M. Ray

    The Social Brain in Autism: Perspectives from Neuropsychology and Neuroimaging, R.T. Schultz, K. Chawarska, and F.R. Volkmar

    Structural Neuroimaging, R.A. Carper, G.M. Wideman, and E. Courchesne

    Neuropsychology and Neurophysiology of Autism Spectrum Disorders, N. Minshew, S.J. Webb, D.L. Williams, and G. Dawson

    Pharmacological Treatments, C.J. McDougle, D.J. Posey, and K.A. Stigler

    Behavioral, Educational, and Developmental Treatments for Autism, S.J. Rogers and S. Ozonoff

    The Costs of Autism, M.L Ganz

    Index

    Editorial Reviews

    "…the chapter 'Past and Future Perspectives on Autism's Epidemiology' by Eric Fombonne is noteworthy. Reviewing studies published in 14 countries, Fombonne makes clear the daunting task of determining such fundamentals as the definition and incidence of autism…This is an important book for anyone engaged in the care of autistic individuals or in research in the area, but should also interest anyone whose clinical or research interests touch on any aspect of the neurobiology of behavior."
    -Ronald J. Friedman, in PsycCRITIQUES, Vol. 52, No. 12, March 2007

     "... This volume lays a fine foundation for those in and outside autism, expertly reviewing what is currently known on specific topics, while also bringing authors with relevant perspectives who have not previously addressed ASD. By bringing basic neuroscience concepts and modeling together with clinical autism experts, this book serves as a forum for the multidisciplinary crossfertilization that is needed for the next decade of advances."
    -Emanuel DiCicco-Bloom Department of Neuroscience and Cell Biology/Pediatrics Robert Wood Johnson Medical School in Neuron 54, April 2007


    "This book provides outstanding updates in diagnosis, epidemiology, genetics and genomics, neuroanatomy, neurophysiology, neuropsychology, and the neural systems underlying the inherent behavioral aspects of autism…a seminal work that makes a highly important contribution to the field of autism research."
    —Pauline A. Filipek, M.D. in the New England Journal of Medicine, April 2007

    "A variety of illnesses comprise autism spectrum disorders and collectively represent a major medical problem. One can predict that this authoritative collection of essays, representing almost all of the leading workers in this important and growing field of research, will move autism research into a rightfully prominent place in modern medicine."
    —Paul Greengard, Ph.D., Nobel Laureate, Rockefeller University, New York City

    "A 500-page guide for the march toward a cure for autism. This penetrating overview of cutting-edge neuroscience research and treatment will be invaluable in motivating scientists to study autism, raising public awareness and giving hope to those families who suffer from this devastating disorder."
    —Suzanne and Bob Wright, Founders, Autism Speaks, New York City

    "Moldin and Rubenstein, themselves experts in genetics and developmental neurobiology, have brought together, for the first time, the very best and most creative thinkers in the field. This book, long overdue, is the essential survey and summary of the tremendous advances the last ten years have brought in autism neuroscience. It also serves as a sobering reminder of the hardships that still await families and scientists as they struggle to deal with autism at home and in the lab."
    —Jonathan Shestack, Co-founder, Cure Autism Now, Los Angeles

    "This excellent collection of chapters on ASD, and on basic research relevant to ASD, provides few answers, but, I fear, better reflects the truth about our understanding of autism. A detailed and thorough examination of epidemiological studies by Eric Fombonne, for example, casts real doubt on the claim that the rate of ASD cases is increasing…And if there is no big rise in prevalence, there is no need to invoke a major environmental contribution. …Similarly, the idea that autism can be explained by damage to the limbic system (the 'social brain') is probably too simplistic. …Indeed, many examples in the book illustrate how much more complex the story of autism is likely to be…the book by Moldin and Rubenstein gives as much reason for hope as for despair. The chapters reflect the diverse tools being called into the service of understanding autism, including neuroimaging, animal models, even the use of neurotropic viruses, which attack the nervous system, to trace chains of synaptically linked neurons."
    —Francesca Happé, Institute of Psychiatry, King's College London, for NATURE, August 2006

    "A variety of illnesses comprise autism spectrum disorders and collectively represent a major medical problem. One can predict that this authoritative collection of essays, representing almost all of the leading workers in this important and growing field of research, will move autism research into a rightfully prominent place in modern medicine."
    —Paul Greengard, Ph.D., Nobel Laureate, Rockefeller University, New York City

    "A 500-page guide for the march toward a cure for autism. This penetrating overview of cutting-edge neuroscience research and treatment will be invaluable in motivating scientists to study autism, raising public awareness and giving hope to those families who suffer from this devastating disorder."
    —Suzanne and Bob Wright, Founders, Autism Speaks, New York City

    "Moldin and Rubenstein, themselves experts in genetics and developmental neurobiology, have brought together, for the first time, the very best and most creative thinkers in the field. This book, long overdue, is the essential survey and summary of the tremendous advances the last ten years have brought in autism neuroscience. It also serves as a sobering reminder of the hardships that still await families and scientists as they struggle to deal with autism at home and in the lab."
    n and Rubenstein, themselves experts in genetics and developmental neurobiology, have brought together, for the first time, the very best and most creative thinkers in the field. This book, long overdue, is the essential survey and summary of the tremendous advances the last ten years have brought in autism neuroscience. It also serves as a sobering reminder of the hardships that still await families and scientists as they struggle to deal with autism at home and in the lab."

    —Jonathan Shestack, Co-founder, Cure Autism Now, Los Angeles

    "Overall, this book is written very clearly and concisely and widely covers the most important key findings of research on autism and ASD. All chapters are written in a lucid way and a complete set of references is given at the end of each section. In addition, this is the first book combining all current autism research carried out to date… This book will be a valuable resource for clinical and basic scientists as well as for students and parents to want to know more about (the underlying aspects of) autism and ASD."

    —Elsevier’s Journal of Chemical Neuroanatomy, March 2008

    "… this book is written very clearly and concisely and widely covers the most important key findings of research on autism and ASD. … this is the first book combining all current autism research carried out to date … . This book will be a valuable resource for clinical and basic scientists as well as for students and parents … ."

    — Imke van Kooten, School for Mental Health and Neurosciences, Division of Cellular Neuroscience, Maastricht University, Maastricht, The Netherlands in Journal of Chemical Neuroanatomy Vol. 36, 2008

     
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