Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Researchers Find Common Genetic Variations in People with Autism

Reporting from Chicago -- Researchers have found that many people with autism share common genetic variations, a discovery that may improve diagnosis and offers the promise of developing treatments for the frustratingly mysterious disorder. Their findings, published in the journal Nature, compared the genomes of thousands of autistic people with those of thousands of people without the disorder -- a massive task that new technology has only recently made possible. The genome is the complex system of DNA coding that builds and runs the human body.
Up to now, the medical community could say very little about what causes autism or how to treat it. The lack of scientific knowledge about autism has led to a proliferation of pseudoscientific explanations for the disorder, as well as unproven treatments.

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