I've been interested in autism for a long time, particularly because many of the most creative artists and most ingenious computer programmers exhibit symptoms of borderline autism or Asperger syndrome. According to the Daily Mail, scientists have discovered what may be behind both conditions.
Scientists say they have discovered the reason why some people suffer from autism.
Those with the condition have too many synapses in their brains - places where where neurons connect and communicate, a new study has found.
Scientists at Columbia University in New York believe that the surplus synapses are created because of a lack of ‘pruning’ that normally occurs early in life.
The discovery is a huge leap in understanding of the complex condition and creates hope of a possible treatment, researchers said.
In mice with autistic traits, scientists were able to restore the synaptic pruning and reduce symptoms.
. . .
Professor Jeffrey Lieberman, chair of psychiatry at Columbia University Medical Center in New York, where the research took place, said: ‘This is an important finding that could lead to a novel and much-needed therapeutic strategy for autism.’
There's more at the link.
If the report is correct, this may be the breakthrough many people have been longing for in the treatment of this condition. Autism has a high correlation with creativity, even genius. If its negative elements can be treated, its positives can be accentuated, to the huge benefit of those suffering from it and potentially the benefit of all of us. Kudos to all concerned.