Date of Award




Document Type

Master's Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Department of Biomedical Sciences

Content Description

1 online resource (v, 68 pages) : illustrations (chiefly color)

Dissertation/Thesis Chair

Valerie J Bolivar

Committee Members

Bruce Herron, Abigail Snyder-Keller, Janice Pata


Autism, Corpus callosum, Mice as laboratory animals

Subject Categories

Neuroscience and Neurobiology


Autism is commonly called the most genetic of neuropsychiatric disorders. Currently, the only diagnostic test is a behavioral evaluation performed by trained physicians and psychologists. There is an urgent need for biomarkers to diagnose autism instead of just relying on behavior and there is also a need to understand the basis of this disorder. One of the theories is that malformation of the corpus callosum is one of the factors that lead to the behavior deficits seen in autism. This theory is based on the fact that human MRI studies have shown that the corpus callosum is absent or malformed in some autistic individuals. The exact genetic cause of the malformation is, however, unknown. Mice are used to investigate neuroanatomical and behavioral phenotypes related to autism because of the ease by which their genome can be manipulated.