Autism and Schizophrenia May Develop During Short Period of Time in Infancy

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Baby playing with a DNA strand

Genes connected to the two disorders may only be active for a brief window of time.

The study, while in mice, could provide clues about how the developmental disorders develop. Focusing on a region of the brain known as the subplate, where the first nerve cells develop, researchers at the University of Oxford, King’s College London and Imperial College London found that genes linked to autism and schizophrenia were only active in these regions during early stages of brain development.

Neurons in the subplate region form the foundation for the network of neural connections that eventually crisscross the brain. Studying the way that nerves develop and join this network can reveal where the growth can go wrong and trigger diseases such as autism or schizophrenia.

(MORE: Autism: Why Some Children ‘Bloom’ and Overcome Their Disabilities)

“Building the brain is like a house of cards. The early connections provide the foundation of the adult structure, and disruption of these may be the source of many developmental flaws. Subplate neurons provide a transient scaffold for the developing cerebral cortex and they assist in the development of the extra connectivity,” says study author Zoltan Molnar of the University of Oxford. “If the scaffold is damaged, then the building shall not be fully functional.”

The researchers mapped and detailed the gene activity in the mouse brains throughout their development from 15-day-old embryos into adulthood. The work confirmed that autism and schizophrenia are developmental disorders that may be established early in life, just at the time when the brain is forming its first connections. The genes connected to both diseases were only expressed in the subplate neurons, and not afterward, suggesting that once their work was done, the disease process had begun.

“It has been suspected for a long time that if the development of the cortex is disrupted by genetic abnormalities or environmental stress, such as prematurity, this would have long-lasting adverse effects on brain development and could lead to problems like ADHD or autism … [This study] focuses attention even more firmly on early brain development as a cause of these distressing neuropsychological problems,” said David Edwards, director of the Centre for the Developing Brain at King’s College London, in a statement.

(MORE: Brain Imaging Could Detect Autism Risk in Infants as Young as 6 Months)

Does that mean that the genetic changes can be identified and modified in utero to avoid the diseases? Although that’s not clear, says lead study author Anna Hoerder-Suabedissen of the University of Oxford, “The main implication is, for other researchers, that transient structures of the brain are important to our understanding of the healthy and diseased mature brain. We would hope to validate some of the newly identified subplate specific molecules for use on human postmortem tissue, thereby opening new avenues for understanding the normal and abnormal development of human brains.”

The subplate region is very small in the brains of mice and is much more evolved in human brains. So the researchers are hopeful that their findings offer hope that the genetic links found in the region during early development would be even more distinct and identifiable in human brains.

“I believe that the study … may be a first step toward more findings of such links in the future and opens a possibility to examine more directly the effect of genetic manipulation or exposure to various environmental factors in animal models,” said Pasko Rakic, a professor of neurobiology and neurology at Yale University, one of the first researchers to discover subplate neurons in the 1970s.

The research is published Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

32 comments
JudithD
JudithD

The headline says the changes occur during infancy but the article says they looked at mice starting at 15 days gestation.  I thought that early brain development started before birth.  This would be before childhood vaccines are given.  When do subplate neurons form?

lovetruth
lovetruth

I guess it would be too much to ask that the authors of this study acknowledge that the most obvious - and preventable - environmental stress an infant's brain suffers is from the countless toxins  (including many known neurotoxins) in vaccines. One need not even enter into the debate about whether or not vaccines work. The question is, even if vaccines could be proven to prevent the diseases they claim, is it worth damaging the developing brain and causing countless permanent disorders, including but not limited to autism? Funny, how such an obvious question is avoided.

EukaryoteGrex
EukaryoteGrex

@lovetruth Actually, the hypothesis that vaccines cause autism has been thoroughly disproven.  Further, some of the diseases that we vaccinate against *can* cause autism - so widespread vaccination actually cuts autism risk, not increases it.

blastoid3
blastoid3

Lilady,

The venom you spew is way to familiar....hmm you sound an awful lot like the old "Autism Diva" aka Camille Clarke.  Thought PO made you disappear (after his book was published) from the internet as your dialog is too much of an embarrassment as one of his "ghost writers"

lilady
lilady

@blastoid3 I've posted for years under my same 'nym and do not resort to sock puppets or Spam.  

Do you have any, um...comments based in science, about the subject of this blog?

blastoid3
blastoid3 like.author.displayName 1 Like

@lilady @blastoid3 

Lilady, before we get to science, perhaps you might want to review the definition of a sock puppet on the internet (hint "lilady"), the definition of irony (hint: "the pot is calling the kettle black", hypocracy (hint: the practice of professing virtues that one does not hold or posess.

You may use the name "lilady" consistency and this is likely not the only name you use but you must if you are going to get credit right?

lilady
lilady like.author.displayName 1 Like

@blastoid3@lilady 

I am a retired public health nurse clinician/epidemiologist who has been posted on science blogs for approximately 3 years.

So what might your education level be...or your professional status...or your experience working in a health care field, blastoid3?  

How about discussing some science and the disproven junk pseudoscience theories that vaccines cause autism?  Try PubMed, the AAP or the Autism Science Foundation for some of the many studies that debunk that theory.

Here's the link to SFARI for studies into the prenatal causes of ASD:

http://sfari.org/

 P.S.  I googled your 'nym and you have never posted any comments, anywhere.  Whose sock puppet are you?

 

 

 

blastoid3
blastoid3

@lilady @blastoid3 

Im sorry lilady or camille but what do you want to know about science?  This article is about an evidence-based study with some preliminary findings.  Enough to warrant you running to the site after your google on "autism" or "vaccines" brought you here.  Just looking at how often you comment everywhere shows this is your job.  Quite easy to see what kind of job it is when reading your comments. 

Point me in the direction of you, "lilady" existing before PO latest book.  I see mostly 2012.  You came in existance AFTER the book and after the departure of Autism Diva from the internet.  While you try to pretend to know something about science, your responses are all canned (aside from the venom) and you clearly are reading from a marketing 101 type manual.  

lilady
lilady like.author.displayName 1 Like

@blastoid3@lilady

You're the poster who accused me of being a "sock puppet" blastoid3.  Why don't you "google" "lilady vaccines" to see my history of posting under that same 'nym?

"Lilady, before we get to science, perhaps you might want to review the definition of a sock puppet on the interne...."

Just when are you going "to get to science" blastoid 3?  I'm waiting for you to post something about science.

 

lilady
lilady like.author.displayName 1 Like

You are being spammed by the Media Director of Age of Autism and her colleagues.

Ms. Dachel, do try to stay on topic about the genetic links to the onset of autism...there is NO AUTISM EPIDEMIC.


alex008
alex008

@lilady No autism epidemic? That's a relief! Perhaps lilady should inform CDC director, Dr Frieden, and Mark Roithmayr, president of Autism Speaks, because they need to know.

lilady
lilady like.author.displayName 1 Like

@alex008@lilady

Perhaps you should read this study which disputes your statement about an "Autism Epidemic":

http://www.graspfiles.org/ning/media/print/PsychScience2005.pdf

There are dozens of more studies available at PubMed about the broadening of the diagnostic criteria between the DSM III and DSM IV,  diagnostic substitution, identifying at an earlier age children who have ASDs and genetics.

(Statistics 101 and Epidemiology 101)


 

vicktorya
vicktorya like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 4 Like

Article underlying assumption seems more about identifying something that can be manipulated in the genetic structure, rather than focusing upon the astronomical rise of autism and its LIKELY causes. As Maurine Meleck mentions, there are STRONG indications that vaccinations are culpable, and other much more likely causes as environmental (all level, including pharmaceutical and electromagnetic) toxins. Agreed, exactly, "move on and get off the ridiculous genetic theories". Manipulating the gene pool IS an option, but it is most likely a drastic 'industrial' solution (for more money-making patented processes or genes), when much more simpler options of 'removing likely causes' would be of immediate benefit. The money-making and power brokering on life processes is evident here, and not being ignored.

MaurineMeleck
MaurineMeleck like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 4 Like

There is a major problem with this theory, however.  There is NO such thing as a genetic epidemic.  Everyone I know(and there are hundreds, thousands) has a perfectly normal and healthy child meeting all the right stages of development and then regressed following their vaccinations.  Maybe this early nerve development theory will pacify the AAP and the CDC, but it will never be a hit with the majority of the autism community.  I say, "Move on and get off the ridiculous genetic theories."  Been doing that for 2 decades and all we see are 100 dreds of thousands more children diagnosed with autism.

Maurine Meleck, SC

grandmother to 2 vaccine injured boys who suffered encephalophy following their vaccinations and regressed.

AlbusNerdisky
AlbusNerdisky like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 2 Like

@MaurineMeleck

Good news: anyone with an honest interest in the facts can easily learn the truth.

1. That there is no epidemic of autism,

2. That the children are not perfectly normal, but rather the autism predates vaccination and that the anti-vaccs actively try and deceive parents about this.

Truth is we are moving on from the ridiculous/fraudulent anti-vaccs. Court cases initiated by abused parents are on-going on both sides of the Atlantic against the anti-vaccs. Even if you don’t care about facts, the courts do.

W&N

MaurineMeleck
MaurineMeleck like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 2 Like

@AlbusNerdisky @MaurineMeleck  The truth is Anonymous white and nerdy that there is no such thing as a genetic epidemic.,  Even if you don't care about the facts-people all over the world are sitting up and taking notice of uunsafe vaccines.

AlbusNerdisky
AlbusNerdisky like.author.displayName 1 Like

@MaurineMeleck @AlbusNerdisky

The truth is….

You have supplied zero data to support the assertion there is an epidemic of autism.

You have referenced zero epidemiologists that agree there is an epidemic.

In its more than 5 years of existence, Age of Autism still has zero contributors that are scientists.

Age of Autism has never had an entry written by an epidemiologist.

In simplest terms the anti-vaccs actively avoid getting the facts correct. 

Anyone with an honest interest in the truth will check with qualified epidemiologists--who can explain the decades of data showing that the autism rate has always been 1+%.

Good news anyone can read the facts right here at the Time website and see how profoundly dishonest Age of Autism is and how they literally make things up to deceive parents. 

W&N

lilady
lilady

@MaurineMeleck @AlbusNerdisky  

Where is your "proof" Maurine about the "Autism Epidemic".  Please provide links to articles about this supposed "epidemic" from reliable first tier peer-reviewed journals.  Any link to any study blogged about on AoA or any of the notorious anti-vaccine websites, do not count.

 

lilady
lilady like.author.displayName 1 Like

@MaurineMeleckWhich medical specialist diagnosed your grandsons with vaccine-induced encephalitis/encephalopathy?

What treatment in an acute care setting did your grandsons receive for this serious medical condition?

Perhaps you could read the Treatment Guidelines and explain it to us:

http://cid.oxfordjournals.org/content/47/3/303.full




AnneDachel1
AnneDachel1 like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 2 Like

What’s missing here is any acknowledgement that autism has reached epidemic levels among children worldwide.A once rare disorder is now so common that everyone knows someone with an autistic child and officials can’t tell us why.The current rate of one in 88 comes from studies of eight year olds, not eighty year olds.No one has ever shown us comparable rate among adults, especially adults with classic autism whose symptoms can’t be denied.Something is dramatically affecting the health of our children and experts seem at a loss to explain it.Genes alone couldn’t possibly be behind what’s happening to our children since there’s never been a genetic epidemic in human history.

Anne Dachel, Media editor: Age of Autism

lilady
lilady

@AnneDachel1  

Why don't you provide that "missing acknowledgement that autism has reached epidemic levels Anne...from your vast repository of junk pseudoscience Spam?

AlbusNerdisky
AlbusNerdisky like.author.displayName 1 Like

@AnneDachel1

Now Ms Dachel,

We can all read the archives here at Time and we can all use Google. And we can all clearly see that you know very well that comparable rates of autism have exactly been found in adults and that the whole claim of an autism epidemic is a complete fabrication.

Your dishonest marketing of your for profit website is shameful, but mostly harmless. Anyone that spends a min fact-checking can see that basically everything you have posted here is false. Just like all the other times…

W&N

AnneDachel1
AnneDachel1 like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 2 Like

Reseracher Pasko Rakic: ‘I believe that the study … may be a first step toward more findings of such links in the future and opens a possibility to examine more directly the effect of genetic manipulation or exposure to various environmental factors in animal models,’

Most of this piece seems to focus on the “genetic links” to autism as seen in mice. Rakic brings up “”exposure to various environmental factors” at the end of the story, without giving us any details on what they might be.Many parents say that the trigger for their child was the vaccine schedule.They took children that were born healthy and were developing normally in for routine vaccinations and suddenly those children changed.They got sick, lost learned skills and regressed into autism.Doctors can’t explain this.They do however have lots of studies, all tied to the vaccine industry, showing no link between vaccines and autism.

Anne Dachel, Media editor: Age of Autism

AnneDachel1
AnneDachel1 like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 2 Like

Officially, autism has no known cause or cure. There nothing a mainstream doctor can tell a new mother so that her healthy baby doesn’t also end up on the autism spectrum by age two.

Every week there are new studies linking autism to various lifestyle choices: older moms, older dads, lack of folic acid/vitamin D during pregnancy, living too close to a freeway, having siblings too close together, taking anti-depressants while pregnant along with moms who drink, moms who smoke, exposure to toxic chemicals in carpeting and in plastic products, obese moms---the list is endless.

How long will there be only guesses about autism?How bad do the numbers have to get?

Anne Dachel, Media editor: Age of Autism

lilady
lilady

@AnneDachel1  

Nice that you finally acknowledge the "prenatal environmental factors" that have been implicated in autism, Anne.  Are you now backing off the fraudulent research done by the disgraced former doctors Wakefield and Geier and the "pretend doctor", David Geier?

AnneDachel1
AnneDachel1 like.author.displayName 1 Like

If anyone is interested in INDEPENDENT RESEARCH on vaccines and their side effects they have only to look at the website for the new film, “The Greater Good,” (See trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ulmEGbwQsOU.) which explores the question of vaccine safety from both sides.

There are over 200 studies that raise serious concerns about vaccine side effects. http://www.greatergoodmovie.org/learn-more/research/

Anne Dachel, Media editor: Age of Autism

lilady
lilady

@AnneDachel1 

Gee Anne, get some new Spam for promoting the junk science contained in this awful movie.

AnneDachel1
AnneDachel1 like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 2 Like

If researchers are really interested in “environmental factors” they could turn their attention to the ever-expanding vaccine schedule.

This link shows the dramatic increase in the number of vaccines on the childhood schedule from 1983 to 2012. http://www.drmomma.org/2011/01/cdc-mandatory-vaccine-schedule-1983-vs.html

There has never been a study done on the cumulative effects of so many vaccines so soon on the health of a child.

Anne Dachel, Media editor: Age of Autism

AnneDachel1
AnneDachel1 like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 2 Like

HDNet TV exposed the fact that while health officials continue to tell us studies show no link, the federal government has paid out millions of dollars for compensation for vaccine injuries that included autism. Seeing these children who were born healthy and were suddenly and dramatically affected by their vaccinations should give us all pause.

http://www.omsj.org/corruption/vaccines-autism-mixed-signals

http://www.ebcala.org/areas-of-law/vaccine-law/transcript-of-vaccines-autism-mixed-signals

Anne Dachel, Media editor: Age of Autism

lilady
lilady like.author.displayName 1 Like

That's called chutzpah Anne by your promoting of the amateur ex-LAPD cop and that dreadful EBCALA study.



WandaFry
WandaFry

Google endocrine disruptors. TEDX site is a good resource.