Washington: A new study has suggested that women who do not take prenatal vitamins early in their pregnancy are twice as likely to have a child with an autism spectrum disorder than those who do.
"This finding appears to be the first example of gene-environment interaction in autism," said senior author Irva Hertz-Picciotto."It is widely accepted that autism spectrum disorders are the result of multiple factors, that it would be extremely rare to find someone who had a single cause for this behavioral syndrome. Nevertheless, previous work on genes has generally ignored the possibility that genes may act in concert with environmental exposures," said Hertz-Picciotto.The finding, if replicated, provides a potential means of reducing the risk of having a child with autism, said the researchers."The good news is that if this finding is replicated, it will provide an inexpensive, relatively simple evidence-based action that women can take to reduce risks for their child, which is to take prenatal vitamins as early as possible in a pregnancy and even when planning for pregnancy," said Hertz-Picciotto.The study is published online in the journal Epidemiology and will appear in print in July. ANI
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