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Autism linked to genetic errors: Study

06-11-2010 09:29 BJT

BEIJING, June 10(Xinhuanet) -- A research published in Nature reveals Wednesday that autism is linked to genetic errors.

An international team of researchers, led by Dr. Joachim Hallmayer of the Stanford Autism Center at Packard Children's Hospital, studied the genetic data of 1,000 autistics from 11 different nations.

The group discovered that there was an array of inherited and genetic differences which were more common among people with autism than among the general population.

The study also found that dozens of genetic errors were linked to five to ten percent of autism cases.

Those errors -- caused by missing or duplicated pieces of DNA - are believed to interfere with the brain's messaging system.

Autism is one of most severe health problems of the 21st century. In California, from 1987 to 1998, the number of children getting services for autism tripled. Then between 1998 and 2002 the number doubled, Mercurynews said Wednesday.

Several researchers are quoted as saying that this study may lead to development of new tests or treatments for autism.

However, the promise of a quick-and-easy test treatment or cure in the near future seems impossible given the unique set of genetic differences of each autistics.

Editor:Zheng Limin |Source: Xinhua

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