Recent Advances in Understanding and Managing Autism Spectrum Disorders

J Child Neurol. 2015 Dec;30(14):1887-920. doi: 10.1177/0883073815601499. Epub 2015 Sep 2.


Autism spectrum disorder in children is a group of neurodevelopmental disorders characterized by difficulties with social communication and behavior. Growing scientific evidence in addition to clinical practice has led the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) to categorize several disorders into the broader category of autism spectrum disorder. As more is learned about how autism spectrum disorder manifests, progress has been made toward better clinical management including earlier diagnosis, care, and when specific interventions are required. The 2014 Neurobiology of Disease in Children symposium, held in conjunction with the 43rd annual meeting of the Child Neurology Society, aimed to (1) describe the clinical concerns involving diagnosis and treatment, (2) review the current status of understanding in the pathogenesis of autism spectrum disorder, (3) discuss clinical management and therapies for autism spectrum disorder, and (4) define future directions of research. The article summarizes the presentations and includes an edited transcript of question-and-answer sessions.

Keywords: autism; developmental delay; language; neurobiology; social communication.

Publication types

  • Congress

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Autism Spectrum Disorder / diagnosis*
  • Autism Spectrum Disorder / epidemiology
  • Autism Spectrum Disorder / genetics
  • Autism Spectrum Disorder / therapy*
  • Brain / growth & development
  • Brain / pathology
  • Brain / physiopathology
  • Child
  • Comorbidity
  • Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders
  • Disease Management
  • Epilepsy / epidemiology
  • Humans