It Now Only Takes One Strand Of Hair To Detect Autism

Technology continues to move forward in many different areas and including medical science. It helps to enhance our lives in many ways and in some cases, it even saves our lives.

One of the more recent developments in medical science is from LinusBio, a company based in New York. They were able to use a single strand of hair and run tests to look for aluminum and lead.

Photo: Flickr/Orin Zebest License: CC BY 2.0

Why is this important? Because autistic children have higher levels of lead and aluminum. As a result, the test is able to detect autism much easier than previous tests.

486 children were involved in a recent study to test the method. Those children were from Sweden, Japan, and the United States. When running this test from LinusBio, they were able to predict autism with accuracy 81% of the time it was used.

The co-founder of LinusBio, Manish Arora, spoke with NBC, bringing out that they could detect the rhythm of autism and the only had to use 1 cm of hair to do it. That is incredible, considering that most autistic children have to wait until they are about four years old before they are diagnosed.

Photo: Pexels/Mikhail Nilov

By detecting autism at an earlier age, they can look for certain milestones in their development and work with them at that time. This can help an incredible amount of children, as the CDC estimates that 1 out of 44 eight-year-old children in the United States have autism.

Another professor from Columbia University, Dr. Andrea Baccarelli, called the research “groundbreaking,” according to NBC. Although she wasn’t involved in the study directly, she sees the benefit of being able to detect autism with a strand of hair.

The FDA in the United States also said that the study was a breakthrough.

Photo: Pexels/samer daboul

The results of the study were published in the Journal of Clinical Medicine. It brought out that the research was focused on things in the environment that could contribute to autism development in children. This includes certain toxins, such as lead and aluminum.

Of course, this isn’t the first study ever done on autism. In the past, a number of different substances were noted to be associated with the disorder, including arsenic, selenium, copper, magnesium, and iron.

Photo: Pexels/Alexander Grey

Scientists feel that genetics do play a role in the development of autism, but environmental exposure may also play a role for some unknown reason.

The initial test is now being expanded to include 2,000 participants. According to NBC, researchers who are not involved in the test say that parents can be optimistic but should still not get their hopes up until the research is complete.

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