New UC Davis MIND Institute research has identified a novel human gene linked to fetal brain development and autism spectrum disorder (ASD). The discovery also links the gene to the mother’s early prenatal vitamin use and placental oxygen levels.
In a study published Feb. 16 in Genome Biology, the researchers used genomic sequencing to find a DNA methylation signature in the placenta of newborns eventually diagnosed with autism. This signature mark was linked to early fetal neurodevelopment.
“By taking an unbiased approach to investigating placental DNA methylation differences, we discovered a novel gene in a poorly mapped region of the genome associated with autism, ” said Janine LaSalle, lead author on the study and professor of microbiology and immunology at UC Davis Health.
Read more at: https://www.technologynetworks.com/tn/news/placenta-analysis-examines-autism-associated-genes-358670