Does Autism Spectrum Disorder Affect The Brain Development Of Social And Communication Skills?

1752 Words Dec 1st, 2014 8 Pages
Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a developmental disorder that affects the brain’s development of social and communication skills. A person with autism may have repetitive behaviors, social challenges, and communication difficulties which last throughout a person’s lifetime. About one percent of the world’s population is living with autism, and about 3.5 million Americans are living with an ASD. There is no known single cause for autism, but most accept that autism is caused by abnormalities in brain structure or function. Brain scans show differences in the brain structure when compared to a neurotypical brain (Autism-Society).
In the past five years, scientists have identified a number of rare gene changes or mutations that are now connected to autism. Autism is likely caused by a variety of environmental factors along with the genetic risk that influence brain development. Environmental risk can include parental age, maternal illness during pregnancy, and low birth weight especially when a baby’s oxygen is deprived. Mother’s exposure to pesticides and air pollution can lead to higher risk of child having ASD. Research suggests that mothers who took prenatal vitamin in the months before and after conception have a lower autism risk (Autism Speaks). Autism is clearly a genetic problem and tends to run in families, but it is hard to distinguish what exactly is going on genetically with autism spectrum disorder. When trying to find autism-linked genes, scientists have…

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