The National Institute of Mental Health has launched 3 clinical studies on autism that will seek to define the characteristics of different subtypes of autism spectrum disorders and look for possible new treatments.
One study will assess the biological and behavioral differences in children with autism who have diverse developmental histories. It will also investigate environmental factors that may trigger symptoms of the disorder.
A second study will examine the use of the antibiotic minocycline for treating regressive autism. As autism may be linked to altered immune responses that cause inflammation in the brain, minocycline's anti-inflammatory effects may have treatment potential.
Hampton T. Autism Initiative. JAMA. 2006;296(16):1958. doi:10.1001/jama.296.16.1958-a