University HealthCare Alliance

May 19, 2020

Potential Autism Biomarker Found in Babies

Cerebrospinal fluid levels of a hormone called vasopressin were lower in babies who went on to develop autism than in those who did not, a study found.

A biological marker in infants that appears to predict an autism diagnosis has been identified in a small study led by researchers at the School of Medicine.

The study of 33 individuals showed that the biomarker, a hormone called vasopressin, was present at lower levels during infancy in the cerebrospinal fluid of babies who were later diagnosed with autism than in those who were not. CSF surrounds the brain and spinal cord.

The results were published April 27 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

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