UC Grad Slam is an annual contest in which master’s and Ph.D. students across UC campuses compete to sum up their research for a general audience. Learn more about Grad Slam Stela Petkova, a neuroscience graduate student.
While the definitive causes remain unclear, several genetic and environmental factors increase the likelihood of autism spectrum disorder, or ASD, a group of conditions covering a “spectrum” of symptoms, skills and levels of disability.
Taking advantage of advances in genetic technologies, researchers led by Alex Nord, assistant professor of neurobiology, physiology and behavior with the Center for Neuroscience at the University of California, Davis, are gaining a better understanding of the role played by a specific gene involved in autism. The collaborative work appears June 26 in the journal Nature Neuroscience.
A two-year, $150,000 research award from the March of Dimes organization will enable Assistant Professor Kassandra Ori-McKenney, Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology, to further explore cell structure and how that structure affects brain development.