Autism spectrum disorders and autistic traits: A decade of new twin studies

@article{Ronald2011AutismSD,
  title={Autism spectrum disorders and autistic traits: A decade of new twin studies},
  author={Angelica Ronald and Rosa A. Hoekstra},
  journal={American Journal of Medical Genetics Part B: Neuropsychiatric Genetics},
  year={2011},
  volume={156}
}
  • A. Ronald, R. Hoekstra
  • Published 1 April 2011
  • Psychology, Medicine
  • American Journal of Medical Genetics Part B: Neuropsychiatric Genetics
Researchers continue to pursue a better understanding of the symptoms, comorbidities, and causes of autism spectrum disorders. In this article we review more than 30 twin studies of autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) and autistic traits published in the last decade that have contributed to this endeavor. These twin studies have reported on the heritability of autism spectrum disorders and autistic traits in different populations and using different measurement and age groups. These studies have… 
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An etiological similarity between ASDs and ALTs in the normal variation is demonstrated and, with results from previous studies, the data suggest that ASDsand ALTs are etiologically linked.
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TLDR
It is demonstrated that ASD is due to strong genetic effects and shared environmental effects become significant as a function of lower prevalence rate, and previously reported significant shared environmental influences are likely a statistical artefact of overinclusion of concordant DZ twins.
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TLDR
Genetic studies have the potential to identify the biological underpinnings of ASDs and other neuropsychiatric disorders and are already being used to examine disease pathways and pathogenesis.
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TLDR
The findings of twin studies implicate substantial heritability of NDDs, and warrant large-scale molecular genetic studies for such traits.
Identification of biobehavioral markers of neurodevelopmental disorders in twins
TLDR
The results support that systemic preand postnatal elemental dysregulation increase ASD risk, and an association between early medical events and ASD risk is found, and point to a cumulative multifactor threshold model, including both genetic and NSE components in the etiology of ASD.
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