Blood test for autism

21 March 2017
Presented by Chris Smith.

A biochemical test for autism has been developed by scientists in the US.

The one per cent of children diagnosed with autism and “autism spectrum disorders” struggle in social situations, find communication a challenge, may have behavioural problems and frequently fall behind at school.

At the moment, the diagnosis is only made clinically - by a specialist assessing a child; there’s currently no biochemical test for the condition, which means most diagnoses are also made “late”, possibly missing an opportunity to intervene therapeutically at an earlier stage. Now that might be about to change. A new study published in PLoS Computational Biology finds biochemical markers in blood that that are significantly altered in the autistic patients. Chris Smith caught up with Juergen Hahn, from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in the US to find out more...

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