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

Project Title

Project Title

Modeling and pharmacologic treatment of autism spectrum disorders in Drosophila

Principal Investigator

Principal Investigator

McDonald, Thomas

Description

Description

It is important to develop laboratory based models of autism, since such models can be readily used to generate and test hypotheses and to investigate, characterize, and manipulate biological mechanisms in much more detail that would be possible using human subjects. Drosophila, the fruit fly, is such an advantageous experimental model and a high throughput system. The present study plans to create the Drosophila equivalent of the genetic abnormalities that underlie syndromes such as Rubinstein-Taybi syndrome, neurofibromatosis type 1, tuberous sclerosis complex type 1, tuberous sclerosis complex type 2 and Rett syndrome – all of which are associated with autism spectrum disorders. The study will also examine any additional impact of a combination of one of these genes plus the FMR1 (fragile X) gene. The study will examine what effects such genetic manipulations have on biochemical pathways in the brain and how this relates to behaviors. The social and memory aspects of Drosophila courtship will be used as surrogate markers for impairments in social interactions and cognitive ability in autism. Alterations in the architecture of the brain areas that control these Drosophila behaviors will also be examined. Furthermore, the research seeks to identify pharmacological agents that can rescue the phenotype.

Funder

Funder

Autism Speaks

Fiscal Year Funding

Fiscal Year Funding

0

Current Award Period

Current Award Period

2008-2012

Strategic Plan Question

Strategic Plan Question

Question 4: Which Treatments And Interventions Will Help?

Strategic Plan Objective

Strategic Plan Objective

Green dot: Objective has greater than or equal to the recommended funding. 4SB. Standardize and validate at least 20 model systems (e.g., cellular and/or animal) that replicate features of ASD and will allow identification of specific molecular targets or neural circuits amenable to existing or new interventions by 2012. IACC Recommended Budget: $75,000,000 over 5 years.

Project Link

Project Link

Modeling and pharmacologic treatment of autism spectrum disorders in Drosophila (External web link)

Institution

Institution

Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University

State/Country

State/Country

New York

Project Number

Project Number

2087

Federal or Private?

Federal or Private?

Private

Received ARRA Funding?

Received ARRA Funding?

No

History/Related Projects

History/Related Projects

N/A

 
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