Activity-dependent neuronal signalling and autism spectrum disorder

Nature. 2013 Jan 17;493(7432):327-37. doi: 10.1038/nature11860.


Neuronal activity induces the post-translational modification of synaptic molecules, promotes localized protein synthesis within dendrites and activates gene transcription, thereby regulating synaptic function and allowing neuronal circuits to respond dynamically to experience. Evidence indicates that many of the genes that are mutated in autism spectrum disorder are crucial components of the activity-dependent signalling networks that regulate synapse development and plasticity. Dysregulation of activity-dependent signalling pathways in neurons may, therefore, have a key role in the aetiology of autism spectrum disorder.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Child
  • Child Development Disorders, Pervasive / genetics
  • Child Development Disorders, Pervasive / pathology*
  • Child Development Disorders, Pervasive / physiopathology*
  • Gene Expression Regulation
  • Humans
  • Neuronal Plasticity
  • Neurons / physiology*
  • Signal Transduction*
  • Synapses / metabolism