February 17, 2010
As many as one in 90 children are today being diagnosed with autism, although autism research continues to focus almost exclusively on genetics. In its January/February 2010 issue, E - The Environmental Magazine looks at another factor that may be driving up autism rates: environmental toxicity.
Richard Lathe, Ph.D., a molecular biologist, and author of Autism, Brain, and Environment, says that since the 1980s, autism rates "have gone up at least tenfold. It indicates that it can't just be genetic -- it must be environmental."
Much speculation has surrounded the role of vaccines in triggering autism, specifically vaccines preserved with mercury containing thimerosal, but there have been limited studies on the effects of other environmental toxins.
Current research is taking up the environmental challenge and is uncovering surprising answers, particularly in relation to the link between heavy metal toxicity and autism.
For more information, read the article "The Search for Autism’s Missing Piece: Autism Research Slowly Turns Its Focus to Environmental Toxicity" By Brita Belli, Jan/Feb 2010, on the E - The Environmental Magazine website.