An analysis of 100 million US medical records reveals that autism and intellectual disability rates correlate with genital malformation incidence in newborn males, an indicator of exposure to harmful environmental factors. The study also finds that Autism and intellectual disability incidence decreases dramatically in states with stronger regulations on diagnosis. Read article.
An innovative methodology from researchers at the University of Chicago was used to detect the role of environment on population level for autism risk. The study shows the strong contribution of non-genetic, i.e., environmental factors driving autism rates. Our only quibble is the author’s supposition that vaccines play a weak role. This inference is due to the methodology not incorporating time trends but only single time point geographic differences. Since vaccines are given across geographies, this methodology would not be able to detect any effect of the burgeoning vaccination schedule over time. Nevertheless, a much needed and welcomed study.
Read the full post at the SafeMinds site.