Genetic mapping may help determine rare diagnoses in children | Study uses brain scans to detect autism | House passes ABLE Act
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December 9, 2014
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Disability Update
Genetic mapping may help determine rare diagnoses in children
Genetic mapping can help quickly identify rare conditions among pediatric patients with neurologic and developmental disorders, according to a study in Science Translational Medicine. The genetic tests also helped to improve treatment and cut health care spending in some cases, researchers said. Disability Scoop (12/8)
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Study uses brain scans to detect autism
Scientists have identified a process that could help doctors diagnose autism through brain scans. Using functional magnetic resonance imaging, researchers examined the brain patterns, or "thought-markers," of 17 individuals with high-functioning autism and 17 adults without the condition as they thought about social interactions. Disability Scoop (12/3)
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House passes ABLE Act
The U.S. House of Representatives approved a bill that allows the creation of special savings accounts for individuals with disabilities. The Achieving a Better Life Experience -- or ABLE -- Act would allow individuals to save $14,000 annually without jeopardizing government benefits. The bill now goes to the Senate. Disability Scoop (12/4)
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Assistive Technology
Neb. man develops all-terrain wheelchair
Brice Crawford's company Rocket Mobility, based in Lincoln, Neb., builds single-seat personal all-terrain vehicles for people with disabilities and limited mobility. The specially designed wheelchairs operate on batteries, are controlled by a joystick, and use tracks instead of wheels to allow them to move easily over rugged terrain. Lincoln Journal Star (Neb.) (tiered subscription model) (12/6)
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Reading class includes students with disabilities, ELLs
A Wisconsin high school includes students with disabilities and students who are English-language learners in a co-taught reading-intervention class. The class' teaching partners -- one an ELL educator and the other a special-education teacher -- say the class was created because similar instructional strategies work well for both student populations. MyCommunityNOW (Milwaukee area) (12/4)
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Training helps responders assist people with disabilities
A Niagara University program has trained more than 600 first responders and law enforcement officials to better handle calls involving people with disabilities. First Responders Disabilities Awareness Training Program Director David Whalen said problems include discrimination, which can include talking down to people with disabilities, so the training helps first responders see people with disabilities as equals. The Buffalo News (N.Y.) (12/7)
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UCP News
It's time to take a tax break
There's still time before the end of the year to make a tax-deductible car donation to United Cerebral Palsy and provide valuable support to people with disabilities. We will take any vehicle no matter the condition -- car, truck, motorcycle, boat -- as long as you have a title. We'll pick it up or tow it, then take it to auction to support the mission of UCP nationally and right in your backyard through our affiliate network. Plus, we'll take care of all the necessary IRS paperwork. Find out more here or call toll free at 1-877-827-2271.
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Here's a new way to shop this season
When you shop Cause Network this holiday season, you'll find discounts, coupons and rewards from 1,200 national retailers such as Wal-Mart, Macy's, Best Buy and Amazon. And, up to 10% of every purchase you make will go to United Cerebral Palsy to help support a life without limits for people with disabilities and their families. You get the stuff you want for less and people with disabilities get the life they deserve. It's a win-win!
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There are dark shadows on the earth, but its lights are stronger in the contrast."
-- Charles Dickens,
British writer
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About UCP
United Cerebral Palsy (UCP) educates, advocates and provides support services to ensure a life without limits for people with a spectrum of disabilities. Together with nearly 100 affiliates, UCP has a mission to advance the independence, productivity and full citizenship of people disabilities by supporting more than 176,000 children and adults every day—one person at a time, one family at a time. UCP works to enact real change—to revolutionize care, raise standards of living and create opportunities—impacting the lives of millions living with disabilities. For more than 60 years, UCP has worked to ensure the inclusion of individuals with disabilities in every facet of society. Together, with parents and caregivers, UCP will continue to push for the social, legal and technological changes that increase accessibility and independence, allowing people with disabilities to dream their own dreams, for the next 60 years, and beyond. For more information, please visit

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Editor:  Kathryn Doherty

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