A study on autism – level 3

11-04-2022 07:00

For more than 20 years, researchers from Columbia University have ran a long-term study on autism.

The study involved more than 115,000 children, and it investigated the causes of autism and possible ways to prevent it. According to scientists, strong genetic factors were part of it. The study involved blood and genetic testing and detailed health questionnaires.

It found three different factors caused autism which were certain genes, the environmental conditions, and the time of these events. Multiple circumstances created the conditions for autism. They were specifically inflammation in the body and a high fever during the second trimester of the pregnancy, when critical neural pathways develop in the unborn baby. The study showed that some children were at a lower risk of having autism if their mothers took ibuprofen to treat the fever.

It’s estimated that one in 44 children in the US has been diagnosed with autism.

Difficult words: trimester (a period of three months), neural pathway (the nerves or the nervous system), ibuprofen (a drug that treats fever and pain).

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