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      The cortisol, serotonin and oxytocin are associated with repetitive behavior in autism spectrum disorder

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          Most cited references 52

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          Two formulas for computation of the area under the curve represent measures of total hormone concentration versus time-dependent change.

          Study protocols in endocrinological research and the neurosciences often employ repeated measurements over time to record changes in physiological or endocrinological variables. While it is desirable to acquire repeated measurements for finding individual and group differences with regard to response time and duration, the amount of data gathered often represents a problem for the statistical analysis. When trying to detect possible associations between repeated measures and other variables, the area under the curve (AUC) is routinely used to incorporate multiple time points. However, formulas for computation of the AUC are not standardized across laboratories, and existing differences are usually not presented when discussing results, thus causing possible variability, or incompatibility of findings between research groups. In this paper, two formulas for calculation of the area under the curve are presented, which are derived from the trapezoid formula. These formulas are termed 'Area under the curve with respect to increase' (AUCI) and 'Area under the curve with respect to ground' (AUCG). The different information that can be derived from repeated measurements with these two formulas is exemplified using artificial and real data from recent studies of the authors. It is shown that depending on which formula is used, different associations with other variables may emerge. Consequently, it is recommended to employ both formulas when analyzing data sets with repeated measures.
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            Randomized, controlled trial of an intervention for toddlers with autism: the Early Start Denver Model.

            To conduct a randomized, controlled trial to evaluate the efficacy of the Early Start Denver Model (ESDM), a comprehensive developmental behavioral intervention, for improving outcomes of toddlers diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Forty-eight children diagnosed with ASD between 18 and 30 months of age were randomly assigned to 1 of 2 groups: (1) ESDM intervention, which is based on developmental and applied behavioral analytic principles and delivered by trained therapists and parents for 2 years; or (2) referral to community providers for intervention commonly available in the community. Compared with children who received community-intervention, children who received ESDM showed significant improvements in IQ, adaptive behavior, and autism diagnosis. Two years after entering intervention, the ESDM group on average improved 17.6 standard score points (1 SD: 15 points) compared with 7.0 points in the comparison group relative to baseline scores. The ESDM group maintained its rate of growth in adaptive behavior compared with a normative sample of typically developing children. In contrast, over the 2-year span, the comparison group showed greater delays in adaptive behavior. Children who received ESDM also were more likely to experience a change in diagnosis from autism to pervasive developmental disorder, not otherwise specified, than the comparison group. This is the first randomized, controlled trial to demonstrate the efficacy of a comprehensive developmental behavioral intervention for toddlers with ASD for improving cognitive and adaptive behavior and reducing severity of ASD diagnosis. Results of this study underscore the importance of early detection of and intervention in autism.
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              Oxytocin improves "mind-reading" in humans.

              The ability to "read the mind" of other individuals, that is, to infer their mental state by interpreting subtle social cues, is indispensable in human social interaction. The neuropeptide oxytocin plays a central role in social approach behavior in nonhuman mammals. In a double-blind, placebo-controlled, within-subject design, 30 healthy male volunteers were tested for their ability to infer the affective mental state of others using the Reading the Mind in the Eyes Test (RMET) after intranasal administration of 24 IU oxytocin. Oxytocin improved performance on the RMET compared with placebo. This effect was pronounced for difficult compared with easy items. Our data suggest that oxytocin improves the ability to infer the mental state of others from social cues of the eye region. Oxytocin might play a role in the pathogenesis of autism spectrum disorder, which is characterized by severe social impairment.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders
                Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders
                Elsevier BV
                17509467
                October 2015
                October 2015
                : 18
                :
                : 12-20
                10.1016/j.rasd.2015.07.002
                © 2015

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