This glossary is designed to explain some of the scientific terminology, abbreviations etc. used by some people when they talk about autism or research.
You may be able to find more information, including links to other parts of this website, by clicking on the title of an item.
If you can’t find the word you are looking for, or you know of a word we should include, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
The fact that an intervention is listed in this glossary does not necessarily mean that we agree with its use. Nor does it necessarily mean that there is any scientifically valid or reliable evidence behind it.
Over time we hope to evaluate each of the interventions listed in this glossary, providing a ranking which tells you the level of scientific evidence which supports or does not support its use. For more information please see Treatments and Therapies for Autism Currently Under Scientific Evaluation by Research Autism
Serotonin, also known as 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT), is a hormone and neurotransmitter.
It is found in many tissues, including blood platelets, intestinal mucosa, the pineal body, and the central nervous system.
It has many physiologic properties including inhibition of gastric secretion, stimulation of smooth muscles, and production of vasoconstriction.
(Source: Dorland’s Medical Dictionary for Health Consumers)
It is believed that some psychoactive drugs, including some antidepressants and some antipsychotics, work by increasing the amount of serotonin in the brain.