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Health & Behavior

A new study suggests that the beta-blocker propranolol may improve communication skills in those with autism. (Thinkstock)

Drug May Jump-Start Communication In Those With Autism

A widely-available medication may be able to significantly improve conversation skills in individuals with autism with as little as one dose, a new study suggests.

February 4, 2016
The Aedes aegypti mosquito is known to carry the Zika virus, which global health officials fear is linked to an uptick in cases of microcephaly. (James Gathany/Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)

Birth Defect Fears Prompt Global Health Emergency

Concerns about a possible link between the mosquito-borne Zika virus and developmental issues have prompted the World Health Organization to declare an international public health emergency.

February 2, 2016

Maternal Obesity, Diabetes ‘Substantially’ Raise ASD Risk

A major new study could shed light on some of the maternal health factors that may increase children's risk of developing autism.

January 29, 2016

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Chinese scientists say they have replicated autism-like behaviors in macaque monkeys like these. (Thinkstock)

In Bid To Understand Autism, Scientists Turn To Monkeys

Researchers say they've genetically engineered monkeys to display autism-like behaviors in a development that could advance what's known about the developmental disorder and how to treat it.

January 26, 2016

CDC Reports Rise In Birth Defect

Physicians are seeing more instances of a birth defect in which infants are born with their intestines extruding from the stomach wall and it's unclear why, government officials say.

January 26, 2016

Mosquito-Borne Virus May Cause Developmental Issues

Worries are running high that a mosquito-borne illness, which may be linked to a dramatic rise in the number of Brazilian children born with birth defects, could make it to the U.S.

January 15, 2016

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Garrett Edberg, a 12-year-old with autism and multiple cognitive disabilities, has his teeth brushed on Sept. 16, 2015 in Elk River, Minn. Edberg has been on the waiver waiting list for 7 years. (David Joles/Minneapolis Star Tribune/TNS)

For Some, Wait For Disability Services Is Over

Under pressure to stop hoarding funds intended for Medicaid waivers, more than 1,000 people with disabilities in one state are now finally getting help.

January 13, 2016

Research Sought To Evaluate Art Therapy For Those With Autism

Despite anecdotal evidence, there is no rigorous scientific proof that art therapy benefits people on the spectrum, but efforts are now underway to change that.

January 7, 2016

Report: Home Care Workers Need Better Protections

A lack of oversight in the rapidly growing home care workforce could undermine new wage and labor gains for many assisting people with disabilities, according to a new report.

January 5, 2016

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Amid Abuse Allegations, Residential Provider Continues To Grow

While evidence of abuse has piled up for decades, an investigation finds one for-profit company has used its deep pockets and influence to bully weak regulators and evade accountability.

December 15, 2015
An obstetrician performs an ultrasound on an expectant mother at Pennsylvania Hospital in Philadelphia. New research finds that antidepressant use during the second and third trimesters of pregnancy may heighten the risk that a child will have autism. (Ed Hille/Philadelphia Inquirer/TNS)

Antidepressant Use May Double Autism Risk

Taking antidepressants during pregnancy substantially increases the likelihood that a child will have autism, a new study suggests.

December 14, 2015
Aquah Clark holds her daughter Waniya while twin sister Haki plays during a session with occupational therapist Melissa Francis. Both girls have autism, and their care is managed by the Inland Regional Center. (Genaro Molina/Los Angeles Times/TNS)

Disability Services In Limbo Following Mass Shooting

A week after a mass shooting forced a developmental disabilities center to close, many families are struggling without access to needed services.

December 11, 2015

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