Women with anorexia display clear autistic traits, even once the eating disorder is under control and they have achieved a normal weight, according to research from Sahlgrenska Academy. The similarities between anorexia and autism in women are also seen in a part of the brain which process social skills.
In a UK study of 5,320 women, three per cent were found to have an active eating disorder in mid-life, a figure higher than expected as eating disorders are primarily associated with adolescence or early adulthood. The research, using data from the University of Bristol’s Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children cohort, is published in the open access journal BMC Medicine.
Anorexia nervosa (AN) is associated with reduced bone mass and an increased fracture risk. The aim was to evaluate the vitamin D status and the association with body mass index (BMI), fat mass and bone mineral density (BMD) in patients with severe AN during a prospective intervention study of intensive nutrition therapy.
Bottoms up: The researchers filmed hungry flies drinking a drop of sugar solution (blue circles in the top panel) and simultaneously monitored the activity of their IN1 cells before, during, and after the drink was consumed (bottom panels). The cells remained active for several minutes after the solution had been swallowed.