Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Eureka!

I've been discovered! I just found the first comment on my blog by someone I don't already know! So thank you, gentle readers, for taking the time. I hope I can give you something back.

Speaking of Eureka, one of our favorite TV shows is the SciFi channel series Eureka, about "America's Smartest Little Town." I love it for many reasons, but one reason is because one of the main characters, Allison Blake, has a son with autism. The scenes with Kevin (her son) in the first season really resonated with me. The second season involved Kevin in a rather bizarre storyline about ultimate knowledge, but it wrapped up with him returning to his previous state of mind. However, we're now half-a-dozen episodes into the third season and they haven't even mentioned Kevin's name, so I'm getting somewhat impatient. Come on, SciFi!

Hooray for Pingree!

Didn't I promise that this post would be more upbeat than the last one? Well, there's no getting around it because Henry's doing really well so far at the Carmen Pingree school. He's excited to get on the bus in the morning, he seems happy even though he has to do more work than before, and he's making great progress. Every day the school sends home a detailed record of how much he's progressing in each step of the program--it's really wonderful to get such an intimate view of what they're working on.

On another topic, my friend Jeff inspired me to look for information about research on the causes of autism because he said he hadn't been able to find a lot of articles in the medical literature. He wondered why the studies hadn't been done. I knew they had been done because I've read references to them.

I'm still looking for some details, but in the meantime, this article that discusses a whole bunch of new studies about the sources of autism that are in progress. Many of you may find this quote from the article interesting: "The study has already provided some intriguing leads. 'We’re finding that the immune system seems to function at a lower level in autism,' says [Irva] Hertz-Picciotto. 'That’s an important clue. It could mean that whatever causes autism also disrupts the immune system, or it could be that the immune system disrupts neural development so that something goes awry in laying down brain circuitry prenatally or in the early postnatal period.'"

Riddle me that, Batman!