Jorge ManzoUniversidad Veracruzana, Mexico
Title: Technological approaches for autism
Autism spectrum disorder (ASD), or autism, is a set of atypical behavioral patterns resulting from subjacent neurodevelopmental issues manifested in early childhood. ASD is a worldwide concern for science and society due to the high number of kids showing the disorder and because the neural complexity of the disorder precludes the innovation of therapeutic approaches. Consequently, there is no medication treatment for ASD at this moment, although there are pharmacological treatments for some associated complications. Risperidone, for example, is an antipsychotic medication that blocks dopamine and serotonin receptors being highly effective in autism for the control of tantrums, aggression, self-injury, hyperactivity, social withdrawal, and stereotypic behavior; notwithstanding, risperidone increases serum prolactin that in the long-term could induce at least prostate precancerous states. Thus, we proposed that concurrent non-pharmacological treatments are also necessary for the benefit of ASD children, then we turned to technology and sensory stimulation. After playing virtual sports with the Wii console (Nintendo Co), we observed that ASD children enhanced motor abilities and increases vocalizations, emotions, and spatial perceptions; auditory stimulation with Mozart’s Sonata 448 reduced the elevated heart rate and systolic pressure; tactile and combined sensory stimulation modified cutaneous sensitivity; and we made the LEA software to teach reading and writing (in Spanish). All these alternative approaches showed that non-pharmacological procedures are appropriate to improve different abilities of ASD children; furthermore, we observed differences in the response of girls and boys, a significant situation to consider in the study/treatment of autism. Therefore, we propose that the proper use of various technological devices is a must that we should consider in therapies for autism.
This work was supported by Coveicydet grant 09 1238/2021 (JM).
Jorge Manzo has completed his PHD from UNAM, Mexico. He is a professor at the Brain Research Institute, Universidad Veracruzana, Mexico, developing research on autism using animal models and humans. He has about 140 publications that have been cited over 2000 times, and his publication h-index is 24. He has stimulated the advance of neuroscience at his university, and the development of a PHD program for new generations of neuroscientists.