alexa Autism recurrence in half siblings: strong support for genetic mechanisms of transmission in ASD
Neurology

Neurology

Autism-Open Access

Author(s): Constantino JN, Zhang Y, Law P, Hilton C, Todorov A

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Current estimates of the heritability of autism spectrum disorders (ASD) derived from existing clinical twin studies1, 2, 3, 4 are potentially confounded by a number of factors, including low sample size, inconsistency in case definition and the role of de novo mutation (currently estimated to contribute to some 20% of cases), and the possibility that heritable causes of ASD in a twin could result in environmentally engendered affectation of a non-identical co-twin in utero, especially if mediated by humoral or immune mechanisms. To minimize these confounds, we compared autism recurrence in half siblings versus that in full siblings, using data (6 June 2011) from over five thousand families enrolled in the Interactive Autism Network (IAN), a national volunteer register for ASD, detailed characteristics of which have been previously described by our group. Recurrence rate among full siblings was observed to be approximately twice that among half siblings, providing strong evidence of genetic transmission of ASD.

This article was published in Mol Psychiatry and referenced in Autism-Open Access

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