Geneticists and venture capitalists alike believe that a Massachusetts-based company, SynapDx, can develop the earliest and most informative blood test for autism, and Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) using advanced technologies. They specialize in differential expression of certain genes in blood cells that may form the basis of an ASD biomarker. The best diagnostic tests in the near future will combine the knowledge of your genomes, which you inherited from your parents and will pass on to your children, with the technology of computer skills able to handle incredibly large data. A medical technology startup, SynapDx, is currently studying large databases of children who have been clinically diagnosed with autism to discover a shared genomic blueprint. Since all children do not have autism, there might be a particular genomic blueprint among the children that are diagnosed with autism. It is also working on a RNA based blood test to differentiate between patients referred for developmental concerns. Interested in SynapDx’s clinical study for autism? To learn more click here.
A group of venture capitalists led by Google Ventures have backed SynapDx autism blood test with 15.4 million, which will help fund the large-scale effort to research 660 children at the same time using advanced computer technology. The children will be between the ages of 18 months and five years in North America and include children from the Lurie Center of Autism in Massachusetts. The study will be led by Stan Lapidus, the company CEO. The potential to diagnose children at a very young age, as early as 19 months, is a breakthrough technology currently in clinical trials. Today, an autism diagnosis can be confirmed when a child is 4-5 years, when a child can no longer communicate effectively in society. This is considered disastrously late. This infusion of funding will enable the clinical trial to be expanded to 20 sites. The hope is that Google’s expertise with handling big data will aid in pinpointing the role of genome changes in early autism diagnosis.
Autism Diagnosis and Therapy
The earlier a child is diagnosed, the faster a parent may be advised to begin therapy and the use of communication aids. The ipad from Apple company has been a boon for children with ASD helping them to communicate more effectively. More such Apps are also being funded for development to simultaneously pair with therapy of autism.
The role of the gut microbiome has also been recognized as critical since all children with autism have very restrictive eating habits. Research into probiotics and prebiotics are playing a significant role in therapy of autism and ASD. Read “Related Articles” below.
Hopefully, researchers will be able to find a clue as to why parents with multiple sclerosis have children with autism, allergy, and ASD. Is there a genomic blueprint that predisposes a family when exposed to certain unknown triggers? When exposed as a child – ASD; when exposed as an adult – multiple sclerosis. Read “Related Articles” below for discussions on autism, role of aging parents, shank gene, coffee intake of father, G-proteins that try to prevent autism, gut microbiome and good/bad germs, role of Vit-D, and more.
Is Autism observed only in Developed Countries?
Although, this company may only provide a partial answer to the mysterious rise in the number of children developing autism, especially boys, it may give researchers a clue into why children from certain ethnicities develop autism when born in developed countries. Why is autism not observed in developing countries? To read a discussion click here for “Why is Autism observed in America and not in underdeveloped countries?”. Autism does not discriminate by ethnicity. It has been observed in Caucasians, Asians, Hispanics and blacks. When children of Somali descent are born in underdeveloped Somalia, they do not develop autism while they do in developed countries like Sweden and USA. This has led to research on the role of Vitamin D from sunlight in autism, since Somalia is in Africa and has mostly sunny days, while Sweden and USA have far less sunny days, and more indoor activities of an advanced civilization with computer games and television. However, since all children in Sweden and USA have mostly similar indoor activities, why do only some of them have autism? The answer may lie in their genomic blueprint differences and/or exposure to a yet unknown environmental trigger.
Today, developing countries may show more cases of dyslexia or mild autism spectrum disorder. However, as these countries become more like Sweden or USA, will there be more cases of autism diagnosed there too? The answer might be yes, since the autism trigger suspects might be in a developed country lifestyle. The answer might lie in the way we eat, live, clean, and prevent in an effort to be healthier. Yet, in that very effort we may unwarily be introducing the triggers like pesticides or herbicides or toxic landfills and spills, that set up local children for autism by damaging the genome of the growing delicate foetus in the womb, depleting our gut of healthy germs that protect symbiotically, or by not understanding all the complex cellular interactions of some of our vaccine components and how they interact with a damaged genome (see below Related Articles).
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