07 Apr '12, 1pm

Living on Earth: Genetic and Environmental Links to Autism

Living on Earth: Genetic and Environmental Links to Autism

DALY: It’s not an easy question to give a single answer to. I think it’s clear that genes by itself do not cause autism in the way that a single gene causes Huntington’s disease or cystic fibrosis. Now it’s hard at this point of our evolution of genetics, since we’ve only discovered a small fraction of the responsible genes, but that doesn't preclude the potential for very, very important environmental factors from also contributing to a large majority of cases. But ultimately both lines of those lines of research - the genetics will be discovering more and more risk factors, the epidemiology will get more confident observations of risk factors - and these two things will then begin to fit together in a much more sensible whole picture.

Full article: http://www.loe.org/shows/segments.html?programID=12-P13-0...

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