terça-feira, 7 de outubro de 2014

Mais um interessante artigo do SFARI , desta vez sobre a relação Ácido Fólico e Autismo

Questions for Joseph Cubells: Folic acid's impact on autism

It’s been 15 years since researchers published an epidemiological study with results so striking they sparked worldwide changes in food fortification. The study of nearly 250,000 women in China found that prenatal supplementation with folic acid, an essential B vitamin, dramatically lowers the risk of the neurodevelopmental disorder spina bifida1.
Now, researchers are revisiting that study to determine whether taking folic acid during pregnancy lowers the risk of having a child with autism. Studies over the past three years from California and Norway have hinted at this2, 3, but none have matched the striking results seen in the Chinese population.
That may have a lot to do with the study design, saysJoseph Cubells, associate professor of human genetics at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia. Vitamin supplementation and prenatal care are the norm in Western countries, making it difficult to study the effects of folic acid deficiency. By contrast, many women in the Chinese study were at risk for folic acid deficiency prior to taking the supplement.
Cubells is working with a team of American and Chinese researchers to track down the participants of the study. They plan to then look for autism in the participants’ children.
SFARI.org spoke with Cubells about the challenges of working across cultural lines and the privilege of revisiting such a groundbreaking study. (...)
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