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Sunday, June 4, 2017

Prenatal, Early-Life Toxin, Nutrient Exposure Tied to Autism

Differences in the uptake of multiple toxic and essential elements during the second and third trimesters and early postnatal periods have been linked to an increased risk of developing autism spectrum disorders (ASDs), according to new research.

The analysis of baby teeth from twins discordant for autism showed that for siblings who developed ASD, uptake of the neurotoxin lead was higher and uptake of the essential nutrients manganese and zinc was lower.

"This study identifies environmental factors [for ASD] that are potentially modifiable," lead investigator Manish Arora, PhD, vice chair and associate professor, Department of Environmental Medicine and Public Health at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York City, told Medscape Medical News.

"The fact that we found differences in metal uptake between twins, even identical twins, is important because it shows that the underlying causes of autism have a significant environmental component in addition to genetic risk factors," Dr Arora added.


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