By Dr. Mallika Marshall

BOSTON (CBS) – Currently 1 in 68 children has an autism spectrum disorder in the United States and there’s no drug yet to treat it, but now researchers at Montefiore Medical Center in Bronx, New York are studying whether a first-of-its kind drug, called Balovaptan, could make a difference.

Balovaptan prevents a molecule from binding to brain receptors and is designed to improve social interaction and communication in people with autism. Previous research in adults has been promising.

Researchers say this treatment would not be a cure and that kids would still need speech therapy, occupational therapy and educational support. It’s currently being studied in a clinical trial involving 300 children and teens with high functioning autism.

Dr. Mallika Marshall

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