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Discover SPARK

Get the latest autism updates from SPARK, including information about genes and ASD research, webinars, and personal stories from our community.

Our ‘genes’ page provides short, easy-to-understand descriptions of genes linked to autism. Under ‘research’, you’ll find the latest updates from SPARK and other autism studies. In our ‘stories’ section, families, scientists and others share their journeys. In our monthly webinars, speakers from the autism community provide useful information for families and people with autism. All are welcome–invitation links are issued in our monthly newsletter. If you have suggestions for webinar topics, please email us at


People with mutations in FOXP1 have what is known as FOXP1-related syndrome. They often have intellectual disability, developmental delay and autism-like behaviors.

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SHANK3 is one of the genes most commonly linked to autism. Nearly 1 percent of people with autism have changes in this gene.

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People with a disruption in the ASXL3 gene typically have severe intellectual disability, impaired speech and features of autism. They may also have low muscle tone, significant feeding difficulties and distinctive facial features, such as a prominent forehead and arched eyebrows. The condition is also known as Bainbridge-Ropers syndrome.

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SCN2A: An Evolving Picture

The SCN2A gene has traditionally been linked to early-onset epilepsy. But new research suggests it might account for roughly 1 in 333 cases of autism.

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Changes in SYNGAP1 are linked to intellectual disability, epilepsy and sometimes autism. About two in three people with differences in the SYNGAP1 gene have seizures. People with differences in SYNGAP1 can also suffer from sleep issues, constipation and low muscle tone.

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