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rdos
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06 Jan 2011, 11:55 am

wavefreak58 wrote:
And yet there are autistics that are bullied that do not end up with depression.


Of course.

wavefreak58 wrote:
Even if neurotransmitter anomalies are always present in depression, the cause of those anomalies cannot be strictly attributed to environment alone otherwise people in the same environment would ALWAYS react the same.


Yes, there are also differences in how autistics react to environment, but that does not deny that most of the depression and neurotransmitter anomalies are related to a hostile environment, not inborn errors.



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06 Jan 2011, 12:58 pm

rdos wrote:
Yes, there are also differences in how autistics react to environment, but that does not deny that most of the depression and neurotransmitter anomalies are related to a hostile environment, not inborn errors.


But it is precisely the fact that reactions to environmental stressors are not uniform that indicates more than just neurotransmitter anomalies are involved. Even among those that do become depressed in similar situations, there is variability in the degree of depression. This would suggest some sort of interplay between external factors and intrinsic properties of the people involved - or in other words, their particular genetic makeup.


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06 Jan 2011, 2:44 pm

rdos wrote:
aghogday wrote:
There is research that suggests that stereotypical behavior in Autism is related to dopamine levels. There is also research ongoing pursuing a genetic link related to dopamine and Autism. While I don't see any conclusive evidence, it may be too early to conclude that stereotypical behaviors do not have a genetic component.

https://sfari.org/news/-/asset_publisher/6Tog/content/researchers-probe-genetic-overlap-between-adhd-autism?redirect=/news


Levels of neurotransmitters ARE environmental. There is no genetic code for their levels. They depend on life history and present situation. That is also why depression and other curable conditions work by altering neurotransmitter levels.

There are hundreds of research articles that indicate a genetic link to neurotransmitters. Here is one:

http://psychcentral.com/lib/2010/neurotransmitters-involved-in-adhd/

While it is understood that behavior and environment plays a huge role and is integral to levels of neurotransmitters. It is also widely researched and understood that levels of neurotransmitters are effected by genetics just like levels of hormones are effected by genetics. While the research is fairly new with Autism, it is firmly established with mental illnesses like schizophrenia.


Naturally, there will be a correlation between ASCs and neurotransmitters because environmental problems are so prevalent in ASCs in today's society.

aghogday wrote:
While one can argue whether or not hyperactivity is related to sensory acuteness, per quote below from Wikipedia there are arguments for and against a relationship so I don't think a definitive conclusion is available at this point.


In Aspie-quiz, hyperactivity primary clusters with Aspie social and to a lesser extent to Aspie hunting. The Aspie social group is far removed from Aspie perception.

I don't see a problem with your presentation of data that suggests the correlation is not strong, but there are other studies that show a correlation. In your reply to me you said there is not a relationship which indicates no correlation. Later in your reply to Wavefreak you stated that there was not a strong correlation; this is reasonable.

aghogday wrote:
While no direct relationship is proven between Autism and ADHD, it is interesting that studies suggest a correlation in fetal testosterone exposure in each of the conditions.


There is a correlation between ASC and ADHD traits, just as people with diagnosed ADHD score higher on Aspie-quiz.

As for fetal testosterone, I've yet to see any study that validates the relationship between relative finger lengths and fetal testosterone. And a study that could provide a strong link between relative finger lengths and ASCs.


There is plenty of research that shows a correlation in fetal testosterone and digit ratio per link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Digit_ratio. I'm not suggesting it is conclusive.

SBC's research did show a correlation of lower 2d/4d digit ratio for people with Autism that are lower on the Autism Spectrum. The correlation was found to be not as significant for people with Aspergers or High Functioning Autism.



Kon
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06 Jan 2011, 7:10 pm

What do you think about the author's treatment ideas (see below). Will his recommendations make things better? I never had an environment like the author suggests and the end result was anxiety that ended up interfering with my life. But I don't see how such an environment would help one for the everyday world, because the "real" world is very hostile even for a person without any mental/developmental/social problems.

"Behavioral treatment according to the Intense World Theory is proposed to focus on filtering the extremes in the intensity of all sensory and emotional exposure as well as relaxation and progressive systematic desensitization to stimuli presentation. The probably most counter-intuitive suggestion that emerges from the Intense World Theory is to surround the child with a highly predictable and calm environment protected from abrupt sensory and emotional transients and surprises for the first years of life to prevent excessive sensory and emotion driven brain development. The child should be introduced to new stimuli and tasks gently and with caution, retracting at any sign of distress. The adoption of a responsive rehabilitation program would ensure that the teacher works carefully to avoid triggering adverse reactions. Introduction to strangers should be controlled, brief, indirect, and as inert as possible. Pharmacological treatment according to the Intense World Theory should focus on reducing brain reactivity in general, blocking memory formation, reducing stress responses, and enhancing memory extinction. Treatment should be applied as early as possible and should last until after the completion of the critical periods of brain development (probably beyond the age of 6).

Such critical periods are often irreversible milestones and hence the disorder might be avoidable if these milestones can be crossed without triggering or further driving the autistic child to seek refuge in a limited albeit secure world. Treatment for elderly children and adults with autism would be more difficult to reverse but memory attenuation and extinction-based rehabilitation programs as well as reducing anxiety levels and stress responses may at least partially reverse or ameliorate the pathology. An important consideration in any rehabilitation program as predicted by the Intense World Theory is the complication of hyper-emotionality, which may be well masked from the observer and which would demand even greater care in how the autistic is handled. Punishments may be greatly amplified for the autistic and imprinted rigorously and indefinitely into the future."



Last edited by Kon on 06 Jan 2011, 7:36 pm, edited 3 times in total.

pensieve
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06 Jan 2011, 7:17 pm

Kon wrote:
Pharmacological treatment according to the Intense World
Theory should focus on reducing brain reactivity in general, blocking memory formation, reducing stress responses, and enhancing
memory extinction.

Those sound scary. What do they mean?

I don't think this will work. You can't stop autism.
I lived in an environment of low sensory stimuli between 0-4. We had no doors but curtains. There was a beach in our backyard.
Population was 800 people. You can't get more relaxed than that.


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aghogday
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06 Jan 2011, 8:29 pm

RDOS

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Sensory acuteness is also not universal in ASCs. It is not even that common


During the course of a lifetime of a person with an ASC, some may experience hyposensitivities to pain while experiencing hypersensitivities to touch, sound, and light. The sensitivities can go from hyper to hypo to hyper again depending on age and life circumstances. While I understand that it is not universal in ASC's to say it is not even that common does not seem to be reflective of what has been studied and reported in the condition. The following link has research that suggests rates over 80% for touch, sound, and light:

http://www.associatepublisher.com/e/s/se/sensory_integration_dysfunction.htm

A recent, informal poll conducted on the Wrong Planet Website is reflective of the research:

http://www.wrongplanet.net/postt141577.html


Regarding hyperactivity and hypersenstivity:

From Wikipedia:

Quote:
There are believed to be multiple etiologies for sensory defensiveness, including genetic factors, environmental conditioning, drug or alcohol abuse, sexual abuse, or premature birth.[2] Those diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder report much higher than average rates of hypersensitivity to sensory stimulus[3].


When I first saw information on the Neandethral hypothesis on Autism, I noticed that sensory acuteness in Autism was an integral part of the theory. You presented some interesting information on your website related to this hypothesis.

When I read your bullets in your first post, I was surprised because they seemed significantly different from what I have seen in mainstream research on Autism. Does the Aspie quiz provide different results from mainstream research, and if so could it be that the respondents to the quiz are more likely to rest higher on the spectrum.

I relate this to the world planet website and forums on the web in general. People with poor writing skills, spelling, and punctuation are often slighted in forum discussions. Allthough many people view the discussions here, it is likely some don't post because they don't want to feel slighted for their writing skills. When I see this happen here it seems particularly harsh for the person with poor writing skills because this may be their only way to connect to the world, but understandable if people on the spectrum have a low level of empathy.



aghogday
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06 Jan 2011, 9:09 pm

pensieve wrote:
Kon wrote:
Pharmacological treatment according to the Intense World
Theory should focus on reducing brain reactivity in general, blocking memory formation, reducing stress responses, and enhancing
memory extinction.

Those sound scary. What do they mean?

I don't think this will work. You can't stop autism.
I lived in an environment of low sensory stimuli between 0-4. We had no doors but curtains. There was a beach in our backyard.
Population was 800 people. You can't get more relaxed than that.


Pensieve, were you exposed to TV at that age?

I'm glad I didn't get any Pharmacological treatment when I was young. To achieve what they are suggesting would mean altering neurotransmitters. Unless better drugs are developed the side effects might outweigh the benefits. Blocking memory formation and enhancing memory extinction sounds tricky. Reminds me of Electro-Shock Therapy. Environmental and behavioral interventions would be safer, but it is likely, eventually, the autistic person will have to face an intense world coming at them, full speed. Answers are hard.



Moog
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06 Jan 2011, 9:49 pm

pensieve wrote:
Kon wrote:
Pharmacological treatment according to the Intense World
Theory should focus on reducing brain reactivity in general, blocking memory formation, reducing stress responses, and enhancing
memory extinction.

Those sound scary. What do they mean?


Sounds a lot like meditation to me. Apart from memory extinction. What does that mean? I mean, I can guess, but I might be wrong.


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06 Jan 2011, 9:57 pm

aghogday wrote:
Pensieve, were you exposed to TV at that age?

Cartoons I think. My older siblings watched a lot of TV.


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07 Jan 2011, 12:01 am

Moog wrote:
pensieve wrote:
Kon wrote:
Pharmacological treatment according to the Intense World
Theory should focus on reducing brain reactivity in general, blocking memory formation, reducing stress responses, and enhancing
memory extinction.

Those sound scary. What do they mean?


Sounds a lot like meditation to me. Apart from memory extinction. What does that mean? I mean, I can guess, but I might be wrong.


Memory Extinction is useful in Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome when the intensity of a memory is particularly distressing. Memory Extinction is used to lessen the intensity of the memory.

Research is ongoing to produce drugs to enhance the process. Here is a link that discusses it:

http://www.dana.org/news/cerebrum/detail.aspx?id=76&p=2

They talk about norepinephrine and how it strengthens long term memory. This can explain a correlation between higher amounts of norepinephrine in fearful or stressful events and the intensity of long term memories produced.

There is a link between higher levels of norepinephrine, laser focus, memory formation, and long term memories; the event doesn't have to be fearful, an intense positive experience can also increase levels of norepinephrine.

In general higher brain reactivity, as discussed in the Intense World Theory, can allow a person to take in more information from the environment and remember more information on a long term basis. The theory proposes a solution in reducing the general reactivity of the brain through drugs. To me it seems like reducing the amount of activity that the brain reacts to is a better remedy when necessary and possible.

It seems very complicated because a person with autism my be hypo-sensitive one day and hyper-sensitive the next day. Some senses can be hypersensitive and some may be hyposensitive at the same time. A person may be hyperactive because they are hyposensitive or debilitated because they are hypersensitive. And one person may experience all of these conditions at some point in their life.



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07 Jan 2011, 12:33 am

This part seems to blur the difference between the social anxiety seen in AS, Social Anxiety Disorder and HSP:

"The lack of social interaction in autism may therefore not be because of deficits in the ability to process social and emotional cues, but because a sub-set of cues are overly intense, compulsively attended to, excessively processed and remembered with frightening clarity and intensity. Typical autistic symptoms, such as averted eye gaze, social withdrawal, and lack of communication, may be explained by an initial over-awareness of sensory and social fragments of the environment, which may be so intense, that avoidance is the only refuge."

To be honest this part seems to describe my own problems with social interaction very well. I don't particularly feel like I'm going to be humiliated as in SAD but that I will mess up because there are so many things to be considered in any social interaction. But unlike some descriptions on here I kinda think I understand social interactions but I don't know which is the right decision. This does cause anxiety though especially if I'm in front of an audience and I'm scared of getting a panic attack because it has happened to me before. Either way, most people seem to be able to weed out stuff and make much more quicker social decisions. Does anyone feel this way?



rdos
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07 Jan 2011, 4:23 am

aghogday wrote:
During the course of a lifetime of a person with an ASC, some may experience hyposensitivities to pain while experiencing hypersensitivities to touch, sound, and light. The sensitivities can go from hyper to hypo to hyper again depending on age and life circumstances. While I understand that it is not universal in ASC's to say it is not even that common does not seem to be reflective of what has been studied and reported in the condition. The following link has research that suggests rates over 80% for touch, sound, and light:

http://www.associatepublisher.com/e/s/se/sensory_integration_dysfunction.htm


I don't find the concept of "sensory integration disorder" meaningful. It is a sorry mess of many different things, and as such there will never ever be any cure or proper understanding.

Here is some parts of it:
* Superior/different sensory acuteness (this is what call hyper/hypo sensitivity, and which is related to Aspie perception traits)
* Lack of enhanced NT perception traits in the area of coordination and judgement of distance, speed and acceleration (this is what I call NT perception, and these traits are NOT related to Aspie perception)
* Instinctive reactions to sensory stimluations (like being afraid of spiders, flushing toilets, motorbikes). These are NOT the same things as hypersensitive senses, even if they are related
* Hyperactivity. Inherited hyperactivity is a social/hunting trait. Environmental hyperactivity is something totally different.
* Problems of social/emotional functionality. This has nothing whatsoever to do with sensory processing!

aghogday wrote:
A recent, informal poll conducted on the Wrong Planet Website is reflective of the research:

http://www.wrongplanet.net/postt141577.html


Such polls do not say too much. They generally attract mostly the ones that answer positively on the issue.



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07 Jan 2011, 4:22 pm

rdos wrote:
aghogday wrote:
During the course of a lifetime of a person with an ASC, some may experience hyposensitivities to pain while experiencing hypersensitivities to touch, sound, and light. The sensitivities can go from hyper to hypo to hyper again depending on age and life circumstances. While I understand that it is not universal in ASC's to say it is not even that common does not seem to be reflective of what has been studied and reported in the condition. The following link has research that suggests rates over 80% for touch, sound, and light:

http://www.associatepublisher.com/e/s/se/sensory_integration_dysfunction.htm


I don't find the concept of "sensory integration disorder" meaningful. It is a sorry mess of many different things, and as such there will never ever be any cure or proper understanding.

The only person that could truly understand it is the person that feels it. I doubt it is the same for anyone. The symptoms may be treated, but a cure seems unlikely.

Here is some parts of it:
* Superior/different sensory acuteness (this is what call hyper/hypo sensitivity, and which is related to Aspie perception traits)
* Lack of enhanced NT perception traits in the area of coordination and judgement of distance, speed and acceleration (this is what I call NT perception, and these traits are NOT related to Aspie perception)
* Instinctive reactions to sensory stimluations (like being afraid of spiders, flushing toilets, motorbikes). These are NOT the same things as hypersensitive senses, even if they are related
* Hyperactivity. Inherited hyperactivity is a social/hunting trait. Environmental hyperactivity is something totally different.
* Problems of social/emotional functionality. This has nothing whatsoever to do with sensory processing!

Okay, I can see you are relating most of it to the Neandethral Hypothesis and it is your point of view. It doesn't seem like you are denying that the related conditions exist; your syntax and causal factors seem different, but that's okay because it's your point of view.

The only one I have a problem with is the statement that social/emotional functionality has nothing to do with sensory processing. I'm guessing you don't have any problems with tactile sensitivity, because if you did, it seems you could understand that not wanting to be touched or having problems touching others might present a problem in social functionality and emotional functionality.

aghogday wrote:
A recent, informal poll conducted on the Wrong Planet Website is reflective of the research:

http://www.wrongplanet.net/postt141577.html


Such polls do not say too much. They generally attract mostly the ones that answer positively on the issue.


Yes, the same can apply to the Aspie Quiz, if it is only offered online, and if it is called the "Aspie" Quiz you are not as likely to get responses for the other parts of the Autism Spectrum.



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08 Jan 2011, 11:25 am

aghogday wrote:
The only one I have a problem with is the statement that social/emotional functionality has nothing to do with sensory processing. I'm guessing you don't have any problems with tactile sensitivity, because if you did, it seems you could understand that not wanting to be touched or having problems touching others might present a problem in social functionality and emotional functionality.


OK, I'll change that to usually not related. There could be links like you propose above, but in general, social/emotional functionality is related to specialized brain functions that are species-typical.

aghogday wrote:
Yes, the same can apply to the Aspie Quiz, if it is only offered online, and if it is called the "Aspie" Quiz you are not as likely to get responses for the other parts of the Autism Spectrum.


Not really. First, Aspie-quiz currently only have about 30% of "very likely Aspie", and similar figures for "very likely NT". So while it certainly attracts more suspected Aspies than a neutral quiz, it has a mix of different types of people. Also, participants use several hundred links on the web, which means participants are rather random on other aspects than being suspected aspies.

Second, when you do a poll on WP, people that are interested in this issue will be much more likely to participate, so the result will be biased. However, when I research things in Aspie-quiz, I mix up the issue with 150 more or less unrelated issues, which means there will be no bias on the issue surveyed. I also do not consider the amount of positive answers, but correlation with other issues in Aspie-quiz.

So, no, it is not the same thing as a poll on WP.



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08 Jan 2011, 12:28 pm

Okay, someone brought up the fact that people with non-AS forms of autism are less likely to participate in your quiz. And you responded by talking about how many people scored as NT. That made zero sense. NT is not the same as other parts of the spectrum.

Of course your quiz also doesn't take into account many other things like people taking it repeatedly over the years, including under different usernames or IP addresses.

What infuriates me about your quiz is the very first page. It asks whether you're diagnosed "AS/HFA/PDD". As if those are the only possible autistic people taking your quiz. What about people diagnosed with just plain autism, no functioning level added? Or those labeled severe or LF? Do you think none of us come to your quiz or what? And how could you even know how many non-AS autistic people come to your quiz (and thetefore know whether the person you are replying to is wrong or not) if you don't even have a way to count us? To me, when I see "AS/HFA", it's like putting a gigantic sign up saying "Sorry you're not only not welcome here but we also don't acknowledge your existence!" Personally I don't agree with functioning labels or even with keeping AS separate but in that case the inclusive term is autism, not aspie. Aspie is a term referring exclusively to one kind of autistic person while autistic is inclusive. But if you do want to track people by diagnosis you should list each possible one.


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