Scientists from the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory in New York have found that children with autism inherit most of their genomes from their fathers, not their mothers. The research was published in the journal Cell Genomics.
The study’s authors analyzed the genomes of more than six thousand volunteer families. They found that in families with two or more children with autism, siblings inherited more of their father’s genes. Conversely, in families where only one brother or sister had autism, the children had fewer genes in common with their fathers.
The mechanism of this link is not yet known. Scientists have suggested that fathers may pass on mutations to their children that cause the mother’s immune system to attack the developing embryo, increasing the risk of developing autism.
Previously, scientists thought that siblings with autism shared more genomes from their mothers than from their fathers.
Study may offer some hope to parents of children with autism and other neurological disorders. Autism Spectrum Disorder varies widely in severity and can lead to both communication difficulties and more serious disorders such as the inability to speak.
Barbara Dickson is a seasoned writer for “Social Bites”. She keeps readers informed on the latest news and trends, providing in-depth coverage and analysis on a variety of topics.