Skip to content
Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee (IACC)
Autism Research Database
Office of Autism Research Coordination (OARC)
 
Project Element Element Description

Project Title

Project Title

Connectopathic analysis of autism

Principal Investigator

Principal Investigator

Sanes, Joshua

Description

Description

The atypical thought processes of people with autism suggest that the brain wiring in those with the disorder has gone awry, but this hypothesis has been difficult to test. Dr. Sanes and his colleagues aim to search for this aberrant wiring with new methods. A new resource known as the "brainbow" mouse may be able to reveal these complex connections. Using a simple genetic trick, each neuron in these mice is made to express a random assortment of fluorescent proteins to paint each cell a unique color. Beautiful and striking, the brains of these mice allow researchers to follow individual neurons through the brain with an ease not previously possible. Researchers intend to use the technique to follow the development of mice with mutations in autism-associated genes, looking for disparities between these mice and controls in the way neurons intertwine and connect and determining whether the mutations alter these patterns. They aim to determine the composition of synapses, looking for factors that might influence the activity or targeting of the neurons. Finally, they plan to measure the neurons' signaling activity at synapses, using a high-throughput method known as multi-electrode analysis. Knowing which neurons are abnormal and how they are different may hint at the developmental mechanisms altered in autism and even how to correct them.

Funder

Funder

Simons Foundation

Fiscal Year Funding

Fiscal Year Funding

78150

Current Award Period

Current Award Period

na

Strategic Plan Question

Strategic Plan Question

Question 2: How Can I Understand What Is Happening?

Strategic Plan Objective

Strategic Plan Objective

Yellow dot: Objective has some degree of funding, but less than the recommended amount. 2SD. Launch three studies that target improved understanding of the underlying biological pathways of genetic conditions related to autism (e.g. Fragile X, Rett syndrome, tuberous sclerosis complex) and how these conditions inform risk assessment and individualized intervention by 2012. IACC Recommended Budget: $9,000,000 over 5 years.

Project Link

Project Link

Connectopathic analysis of autism (External web link)

Institution

Institution

Harvard University

State/Country

State/Country

Massachusetts

Project Number

Project Number

SFARI-07-35

Federal or Private?

Federal or Private?

Private

Received ARRA Funding?

Received ARRA Funding?

No

History/Related Projects

History/Related Projects

Connectopathic analysis of autism | 234451 | 2008 | Project number unavailable

 
Back to Top