February Digest

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National News

Autism Journal Abandons Puzzle Piece
DisabilityScoop – A major autism research journal is moving away from using a puzzle piece as a symbol of the developmental disorder months after a study found the imagery evokes negative connotations.

New Service Helps Find Restaurants Trained to Accommodate Those With Alzheimer’s and Autism
The Autism Site – Dining out can be a challenge for those with Alzheimer’s, Autism, PTSD, and other physical or cognitive conditions. Jen Apazidis, who is a co-owner of Red Raven gastropub in Acton, Massachusetts, came up with a solution.

Autism Studies You May Have Seen Recently and What to Know About Them
The Mighty – Autism is not something that needs to be “cured” or feared, but it is still a major research topic due to little being known about it. Society holds misconceptions about autism, and some of these misconceptions come from research.

The Vaccine-Autism Myth Started 20 Years Ago. Here’s Why It Still Endures Today
MSN – Anti-vaccination headlines—like “HPV vaccine leaves another 17-year-old-girl paralyzed”—populate the Internet. That, and “Mom researches vaccines, discovers vaccination horrors, goes vaccine free,” are just a few examples of the fake science news stories shared this month on Facebook.


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Research

Autism, Bipolar and Schizophrenia Share Genetic Similarities
U.S. News – By examining brain tissue, researchers say they’ve found similarities in certain mental illnesses, including autism and schizophrenia.

Blood, Urine Tests Could Change How Autism Is Diagnosed
DisabilityScoop – New research suggests that blood and urine tests could one day be used to diagnose autism, potentially offering a biomarker to identify children at younger ages.

 

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Education

How Can Students with Autism be Supported Through College?
MedicalXpress – Thirty years ago it was rare for a student with ASD to enter college. But over the past decades, there has been much improvement in the detection and awareness of ASD in children. Now, with the provision of effective treatments, those with average or above average intellectual abilities are enrolling at universities.

What Teenagers Can Teach Scientists About Autism
Spectrum – Although experts have focused mainly on early childhood as the primary window for intervention, adolescence represents a second window. But we know far too little about the changes in brain connectivity, structure and function that support optimal social development.

 

Technology

How I Use Minecraft to Help Kids with Autism
TED – The internet can be an ugly place, but you won’t find bullies or trolls on Stuart Duncan’s Minecraft server, AutCraft.

Improving Autism Therapies by Exploring the Roots of Social Avoidance
Autism Speaks – In my work with children and families affected by autism, I see the behavioral challenges that bring them to our clinic for help – and how these challenges affect their daily lives. Some of the most common involve social interaction.

 

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Teens & Adults

Games Plus Group Therapy May Help Adults with Autism Find Jobs
Spectrum – Adults with autism who undergo a therapy designed to bolster social learning show cognitive benefits that may increase their chances of employment, according to a new study.

The Growing Acceptance of Autism in the Workplace
CBS News – We like to think that good work is always rewarded. But what if some people who could do good work can’t their foot in the door in the first place?

 

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