The prevalence of autism spectrum disorders in the U.S. has been stable over the past few years, according to a research letter in JAMA. In an analysis of data from the National Health Interview Survey, estimated prevalence of ASD rose slightly — but not significantly — from 2.24% in 2014, to 2.41% in 2015, and to 2.58% in 2016. Another recent study suggested that a plateau in ASD prevalence began in 2012.
Use of gabapentinoids — including gabapentin and pregabalin — more than tripled between 2002 and 2015. Researchers warn that the combination of a dearth of long-term safety data, small effect sizes, concern for increased risk of overdose in combination with opioids, and high rates of off-label prescribing raises concern. (JAMA Internal Medicine)
Bennet Omalu, MD, the pathologist who is credited with sounding the alarm on chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) in professional football players, has quit his job as chief medical officer of San Joaquin County, over concerns that the sheriff has used his position as coroner to influence investigations of people who died while in custody or during arrest by the police. (CBS News)
Alzforum reviews the top Alzheimer’s stories of 2017.
Here’s a reality check on Elon Musk’s hopes for cognitive enhancement in humans. (The Guardian)
Aiming at three targets common in diabetes therapeutics — GLP-1, GIP, and glucagon — slowed memory loss in mice. (Eurekalert)
These are the scientists who continue to work on fighting Zika as the virus fades from public consciousness. (Washington Post)