Building on their prior work, a team of neuroscientists at Caltech now report that rare patients who are missing connections between the left and right sides of their brain show a strikingly high incidence of autism.
Caltech researchers have, for the first time, pinpointed areas of the brain that seem to serve as “arbitrators” between two decision-making systems, weighing the reliability of the predictions each makes and then allocating control accordingly.
According to the latest studies from the fly laboratory of Caltech biologist David Anderson, male fruit flies fight more than their female counterparts because they have special cells in their brains that promote fighting. These cells appear to be absent in the brains of female fruit flies.
Subjects were asked to observe the shifting value of a hypothetical financial asset and make predictions about whether it would go up or down, while simultaneously interacting with an "expert" who was also making predictions.
"Traditional research has studied autism as a genetic disorder and a disorder of the brain, but our work shows that gut bacteria may contribute to ASD-like symptoms in ways that were previously unappreciated," says Sarkis Mazmanian.