Tiny gene fragments linked to brain development and autism

I have no idea where this is going to go, but it just highlights how complex autism is - and how little we know about it's cause(s).

The researchers found that microexons are used in neurons by alternative splicing, a process in which a single gene can produce many different proteins. Microexons are pasted – or spliced – into gene messengers known as mRNAs to generate forms of proteins that the nervous system needs to function properly.

The misregulation of this process, the researchers found, can have major effects on how proteins function.
— http://news.utoronto.ca/scientists-discover-tiny-gene-fragments-linked-brain-development-and-autism