Worldwide scan of autism genetic links
The first results from a scan of the world's largest collection of DNA samples from families affected by autism point to two new genetic links that may predispose people to the brain disorder. The study's findings appear in the Feb. 18 online edition of the journal Nature Genetics. The five-year study was led by the Autism Genome Project, an international consortium of scientists from 50 institutions in 19 countries. Founded in 2002 with funding from the nonprofit Autism Speaks and the National Institutes of Health, the group shared DNA samples, data and expertise in a coordinated effort to identify autism-susceptibility genes.