Caring for our children's future
Date: March 2, 2015
Source: Rowan University
A newly published study is the first to report an association between bisphenol-A (BPA), a common plasticiser used in a variety of consumer food and beverage containers, with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) in children.
"It has been suspected for a lot of years that BPA is involved in autism, but there was no direct evidence," said T. Peter Stein, of Rowan University and the study's lead author. "We've shown there is a link. The metabolism of BPA is different in some children with autism than it is in otherwise typically developing children." The research team examined urine specimens from 46 children with ASD and 52 typically developing control children. The metabolomics analyses showed total BPA excreted to be approximately three times greater with the ASD group than the controls.
"Other studies involving rodent data have shown that BPA functions as an endocrine disruptor, but ours is the first to show this in humans and the first to associate it to autism," Stein said. "The observations show that for some children there was a relationship between the ability to metabolise BPA and symptoms of autism."
"The key point is that the study seems to link BPA to autism and creates an open area for further research. One implication of our study is that there might be a benefit to reducing BPA exposure for pregnant women and for children with autism."
Stein, P. T., Schluter, M., Steer R. A., Guo, L., & Ming, X. (2015). Bisphenol A Exposure in Children With Autism Spectrum Disorders. Autism Research, DOI: 10.1002/aur.1444
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