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Air Pollution Increasingly Linked to Autism

The Harvard School of Public Health released a new study of 1,767 children, and has linked high levels of pollution to an increase in the rate of...

The Harvard School of Public Health released a new study of 1,767 children, and has linked high levels of pollution to an increase in the rate of autism. The study looked at 245 children with autism and 1,522 children without autism, and compared the estimated amount of pollution each child was exposed to during pregnancy in the third trimester based on the address of the mother at the time.

 

Unsurprisingly, the study has shown that the children with autism had the highest levels of particulate matter exposure in the third trimester of pregnancy. And as we all know, particulate matter, more specifically PM2.5, can cause a whole slew of problems due to the PM2.5 being small enough to enter the blood stream through the lungs. Then the PM2.5 can wreak havoc on our bodies, capable of causing strokes and other serious ailments given enough exposure.

While the study cannot conclusively state that air pollution has a direct role or cause in the development of autism, there has been other studies that have found similar results. At this point, the evidence to more conclusively point at air pollution as a significant factor in autism is growing steadily. In fact, Professor Frank Kelly, the director of the environmental research group at King’ College London has stated, “I think if it was this study by itself I wouldn’t take much notice, it’s now the fifth that has come to the same conclusion.”

 


References

http://www.bbc.com/news/health-30521255

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