Girls may require more mutations than boys to develop autism

Result may help explain why more males wind up with disorder

By Laura Sanders, 11:00 AM February 27, 2014

Compared with males diagnosed with autism or other neurodevelopmental disorders, females with the disorders have more mutations in their DNA, scientists report in the March 6 American Journal of Human Genetics.  

In some still mysterious way, females may be better able to protect themselves against these mutations, some scientists think. That idea may help explain a striking difference: Four boys receive an autism diagnosis for every girl who does.

Small studies have hinted that girls can endur...

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