autism

The hunt to find genes that cause autism has been a long slog, one hampered by a lack of technology and families willing to be tested.

But the effort is starting to pay off. On Tuesday, researchers at more than 50 laboratories said they had identified more than 100 genes that are mutated in children with autism, dozens more than were known before.

  Ross Reynolds speaks with novelist David Mitchell about what he says is the most important book he's done: a translation of a memoir by a young autistic Japanese boy. In the book, "The Reason I Jump," the boy explains the behaviors that may seem strange to outsiders. Mitchell himself has a child with autism. He talks about what he learned from doing the translation.

KUOW Photo/Ruby de Luna

At the Alaska Airlines ticket counter at Sea-Tac Airport, parents Ron and Christine Vega wait for their boarding passes.

Their son, Gibson, 5, carries a blue backpack that has essentials for a mock airplane trip: snacks, things to keep him preoccupied and a white cloth towel that helps him deal with stress.

An Autistic Teen's Guide To Impersonating Michael Jackson

Aug 27, 2014
Courtesy of Lorenzo Manuel

It was homecoming dance at Roosevelt High School, and the Roosevelt football team had just been crushed. As it started getting late, the energy sunk even lower. People were mostly slow dancing; it was all Taylor Swift at that point.

Just then, a familiar tune started to play. The thinning crowd began to roar. A spotlight came on. As the first lyrics of Michael Jackson's "Thriller" shook the room, a skinny kid with short brown hair and a sparkly glove began to dance.

It’s the season of summer camps, but kids with autism or ADHD are often left out because of behavior issues. But next week, they’ll get have another option, through a joint program between UW Autism Center and Seattle Children’s Hospital.

O.S.T. and L.H. – their initials in court documents – are minors diagnosed with autism. Their families sued Regence, the health insurance company, for not covering all therapies related to their condition.

The symptoms of autism may not be obvious until a child is a toddler, but the disorder itself appears to begin well before birth.

Brain tissue taken from children who died and also happened to have autism revealed patches of disorganization in the cortex, a thin sheet of cells that's critical for learning and memory, researchers report in the New England Journal of Medicine. Tissue samples from children without autism didn't have those characteristic patches.

Traditionally, research has focused on women's "biological clock." But in recent years, scientists have been looking more and more at how the father's age at conception might affect the baby, too.

A study published Wednesday hints that age really might matter — in terms of the child's mental health.

Chloe Burton

Chloe Burton had a great year in kindergarten.

Although she has autism, she had no problem learning in a general education classroom alongside her peers.

But in first grade, things went downhill. Chloe wandered the classroom instead of finishing her work.

KUOW Photo/Ann Dornfeld

As educational practice catches up with federal law that requires students learn in the least restrictive environment, an increasing number of students with autism and other disabilities are learning alongside their typically-developing peers in mainstream classrooms.

Temple Grandin's book "The Autistic Brain."

Autism is a developmental disorder characterized by social impairment, communication difficulties, repetitive interests or behaviors, and occasional cognitive delays. The number of kids with autism in the United States has skyrocketed in recent years. It's estimated that one in 88 children currently has autism.

Temple Grandin is an activist for autism rights. In her latest book, she talks about genetic research that links brain science and behavior, as well as sharing her own experiences growing up with autism. She spoke at Seattle’s Town Hall on May 20, 2013.

KUOW/Serene Careaga

Kenyan Truth Justice And Reconciliation Report
Last week a Truth, Justice and Reconciliation Commission delivered a report on 2007 post-election violence in Kenya that killed more than 1,000 people and left 600,000 homeless. Seattle University law professor Ronald Slye was one of three international commissioners. He joins us with a look at the findings.

Understanding Developmental Outcomes In Children With Autism
By studying brain pattern responses to words in 2-year-olds with autism spectrum disorder, researchers have been able to predict a child's linguistic, cognitive and adaptive skills at age 4 and 6. Dr. Patricia Kuhl, co-director of the University of Washington’s Institute for Learning and Brain Science, studies early language and brain development. She lead the study and explains its implications.  

Radio Retrospective: The Rules Of Writing Radio Drama
At the start of radio’s Golden Age, people didn’t know how to write for radio.  They remade stage plays and movies, but that didn’t really work. Rules for writing a good radio drama developed over time. We explore the main rules scriptwriters followed.

Restaurant Recommendation
Food writer Sara Dickerman joins us with a lunch recommendation. Prefer to cook for yourself? She also has a pick for a great cookbook!

This Week In Olympia
The state Legislature begins week two of the special session today. Everett Herald reporter Jerry Cornfield joins us with a look at what to expect.

Traumatic Brain Injury
Sarah was hit by a drunk driver in her 20s.  Over the years, her brain has exhibited more and more signs of damage. Traumatic brain injury can present challenges and frustrations for partners as well. Sarah's long-term partner, Julie Hall, shares her personal story of loving, caring and coping with a partner with a brain injury.

The Autistic Brain
Temple Grandin is one of the world’s most accomplished and well-known adults with autism.  In her new book “The Autistic Brain,” Temple Grandin explores what current brain science has revealed about autism and the possibilities it offers.

How Does Washington State Help Workers With Developmental Disabilities?

May 9, 2013
Flickr Photo/Tony Hall

Washington State’s Developmental Disabilities Administration helps people with disabilities like autism, cerebral palsy and down syndrome find work. The DDA serves nearly 9,000 adults over the age of 21.

Ross Reynolds interviews Dr. Pat Brown, director of the University of Washington’s employment program. Ross also talks with Doug Wilson, a sales manager at Copiers Northwest, who employs people with developmental disabilities and Shawn Christensen, a man with cerebral palsy who works at Regal Cinemas in Renton.

Placenta And Autism Risk, Vegan Before Six, And Greendays

Apr 30, 2013
Patrick Lynch, Yale University, 2013

Placenta Offers Insight Into Autism Risk
New autism research shows that babies born with a high genetic risk for the disorder were more likely to have abnormal folds and creases in their placentas.  However, Dr. Harvey Kliman says that it is much too early to say that an examination of the placenta could be used as a definitive test for autism at birth.

VB6: Eat Vegan Before 6:00 At Night
Could you eat vegan? If you could, research strongly suggests you’d be healthier, weigh less and perhaps even have a sharper brain. But could you find the discipline? Mark Bittman has a plan for you. The New York Times food columnist has written "VB6: Eat Vegan Before 6:00 To Lose Weight and Restore Your Health …. For Good."

What Plant, Where And When?
We are in the midst of plant-sale season. So how do you choose the perennial in spring that will survive the summer and look great next year? The Greendays gardening panel has some simple rules to follow for picking the right plant and taking care of it.

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