Is Mickey One of Those Autistic Mice?
Researchers believe that they caused mice to develop autistic behaviors by deleting a gene in their cerebullums, then cured them by giving them rapamycin. At first I thought the idea of autistic mice was nearly as ridiculous as the idea of autistic fish. But then I read the descriptions of the behaviors they saw in the mice, and realized that many of us are familiar with a mouse who displays all of them.
His name is Mickey. And he has shown all three of traits that the mice in the study showed.
Abnormal social interactions. The mice spent less time with each other and more with inanimate objects, compared to controls.
Mickey spends a lot of time hanging out with brooms. (Okay, animated brooms, but still.)
Repetitive behaviors. The mice spent extended amounts of time pursuing one activity or with one particular object far more than normal.
Mickey has a whole farm of animals that he enjoys doing the same things over and over with in exactly the same way.
Abnormal communication. Ultrasonic vocalizations, the communication technique among rodents, were highly distressed.
Sounds pretty distressed to me!