Home / News / Promise seen in possible treatment for autism spectrum disorder – MIT News

Promise seen in possible treatment for autism spectrum disorder – MIT News

Human chromosome 16p11.2 deletion syndrome is brought on by the absence of about 27 genes on chromosome 16. This deletion is characterised by mental incapacity; impaired language, communication, and socialization expertise; and autism spectrum disorder or ASD.

Research from the laboratories of Mark Bear at MIT and Jacqueline Crawley on the University of California at Davis, has recognized a possible therapeutic for ASD. Researchers discovered that R-Baclofen reverses cognitive deficits and improves social interactions in two strains of 16p11.2 deletion mice.

The findings, published in the journal Neuropsychopharmacology, have the potential to deal with people with 16p11.2 deletion syndrome and ASD.

“Our collaborative teams found that treatment with the drug R-baclofen improved scores on several learning and memory tasks, and on a standard assay of social behavior, in 16p11.2 mutant mice,” says Crawley, co-senior writer of the paper together with Bear.

“This unique corroboration of findings by two independent labs, using two distinct lines of mice with the same mutation, increases confidence that R-baclofen may be an effective pharmacological treatment for some of the symptoms of human 16p11.2 deletion syndrome, including intellectual impairment and autism,” she says.

“These findings are particularly exciting on two fronts,” says Bear, who’s the Picower Professor of Neuroscience at MIT. “First, the results show that diverse genetic causes of intellectual disability and autism may converge on a limited number of pathophysiological processes that can be ameliorated pharmacologically. Thus, a treatment for one genetically defined disorder may be beneficial for another with phenotypic overlap. Second, R-Baclofen has a well-understood safety profile and is well-tolerated in children and adults, making clinical studies feasible in the near future.”

Growing information about genetic mutations in individuals with autism is enabling researchers to guage speculation-pushed pharmacological interventions in phrases of their capability to reverse the organic and behavioral consequence of particular mutations that trigger autism. One of the genes in the 16p11.2 deletion area regulates the inhibitory neurotransmitter GABA. Researchers examined the speculation that growing GABA neurotransmission utilizing R-baclofen, which binds to GABA-B receptors, might reverse analogous behavioral signs in a mouse mannequin of 16p11.2 deletion syndrome.

In the present paper, researchers report the outcomes of animal mannequin research utilizing two independently derived strains of mutant mice, every lacking a chromosomal area analogous to human 16p11.2. Normal and mutant mice at each labs have been examined after receiving R-baclofen in their consuming water on three duties: novel object recognition, object location reminiscence, and contextual recognition studying and reminiscence. In addition, R-baclofen handled mutant mice scored higher after treatment on every cognitive process than the untreated mutant mice. R-baclofen additionally elevated scores on a normal assay of mouse social behaviors — male-feminine reciprocal social interactions — in the 16p11.2 mutant mice.

This research means that R-baclofen must be explored for the treatment of cognitive phenotypes in affected people.

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