Group Publication: Race reporting, benchmarking, chandelier cells | Spectrum
Illustration by Laurenne Boglio
Here it is — your weekly update on important autism research tweets, freshly baked from the computer.
Jessica Steinbrenner, advanced research scientist at the Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and her colleagues tweeted a thread via Autism about their new finding: Autism intervention research often fails to report participants’ race and ethnicity, and when it does, it overlooks historically marginalized groups.
A new study shows autism intervention research often doesn’t report the race & ethnicity of participants. When reported, there’s a lack of representation across historically minoritized groups
???? by @DrJessSteinB @JamieP26 @SallieNowellPhD & @KaraHume1 https://t.co/wDFz0nrero
— Autism Journal (@journalautism) January 26, 2022
“How can we even begin to address #racialinequity within #autism research if we don’t even know the demographics of the sample/population?” Lindy J. Johnson, a doctoral student at Michigan State University in East Lansing, asked in response.
How can we even begin to address #racialinequity within #autism research if we don’t even know the demographics of the sample/population? This is hugely problematic & it’s beyond time that it becomes standard practice to report. https://t.co/3eOupRxMDU
— Lindy J Johnson (@lindyjjohnson) January 26, 2022
Jason Chow, assistant professor of special education at the University of Maryland in College Park, shared a six-part thread about his new paper, in which he and his colleagues set out to establish field- and outcome-specific benchmarks for effect sizes to help other researchers plan their work and evaluate clinical trials.
Excited to share our new paper in @JCCAP_Editor! We present effect size distributions to provide field-based benchmarks for interpreting observed effects of interventions for improving outcomes for young children with autism. We hope this work contributes in a few ways 1/6 pic.twitter.com/GmZACOU1S4
— Jason Chow (@JasonChow) January 25, 2022
In the last tweet of the thread, Chow offers a link through which the first 50 copies of the published paper are free. He also gives the link to the preprint for latecomers.
Tony Charman, professor of clinical child psychiatry at King’s College London in the United Kingdom, tweeted praise for the team, as did others.
(Yet) another excellent SR/MA by the AIM Team @KristenBott @MichealSandbank @JasonChow! Would have liked (eg in SM) data for RCTs vs. quasi-experimental studies too (probably wouldn’t have changed much but we don’t know). A glass-full vs. half-empty overview of EI in #autism https://t.co/qcDETflGlj
— Tony Charman (@TonyASDorAFC) January 27, 2022
Sarabeth Broder-Fingert, assistant professor of pediatrics at Boston University in Massachusetts, forecast widespread use of the recommendations, joking that it was too bad future citations of Chow’s work in grants wouldn’t boost his H-index, a measure of academic impact.
Too bad being cited in grants doesn’t impact you H-factor :(. This is amazing work that you for pulling this together!!
— Sarabeth Broder-Fingert MD, MPH (@sbroderfingert) January 26, 2022
(Elsewhere on Twitter this week, autism researchers congratulated Chow’s colleague on the work, Micheal Sandbank, assistant professor of special education at the University of Texas at Austin, on her upcoming move to join the faculty at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. )
Some News: I’m thrilled to share that next year I’ll be joining the amazing faculty at UNC Chapel Hill in the Division of OS/OT & Department of Allied Health. It has long been our dream to go to Carolina and now it’s also our reality!! #GoingToCarolinaInMyMind #ActuallyInMyCar
— Micheal Sandbank (@MichealSandbank) January 25, 2022
Noah Sasson, professor of psychology at the University of Texas at Dallas, tweeted a reminder that “it’s not hard” to be careful to not frame studies of autism traits as studies of autism.
I am once again begging researchers and press release writers not to frame studies of autistic traits as autism. It’s not hard! https://t.co/PN4XrU52mg
— Noah Sasson (@Noahsasson) January 26, 2022
And for a visual treat, swing through this Twitter thread from the Allen Institute to see chandelier cells in all their glory, extending onto pyramidal neurons in layer 2/3 of the mouse visual cortex and fluorescing into action.
Different cell types in the brain have their own connectivity rules and patterns. In a recently published study, our #neuroscience researchers took a deep dive into the connectomics of an important but enigmatic cell type, the chandelier cell. ????1
???? https://t.co/H6NNaCQjgc pic.twitter.com/rqdgPCrBhQ
— Allen Institute (@AllenInstitute) January 24, 2022
That’s it for this week’s Community Newsletter! If you have any suggestions for interesting social posts you saw in the autism research sphere, feel free to send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Cite this article: https://doi.org/10.53053/AUPT3297