Why do siblings of children with autism also have social problems?

iStock LARGE x acf cropped
Image credit: iStock

Even typical siblings of children with autism tend to struggle with anxiety, depression and social difficulties, according to a large new analysis.

The findings provide the most robust evidence to date that these siblings have problems, too, says lead author Carolyn Shivers, assistant professor of human development at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. “We’ve found evidence now from nearly 70 studies that says there is actually something going on there.”

“We don’t really understand that much about what underpins [this phenomenon],” [researcher William] Mandy says. “Let’s hope [this paper] kicks off research that really tries to get at the mechanisms.” Understanding the biology might shed light on autism’s heritability and perhaps yield valuable clinical strategies to help the siblings, he says.

Related article:  How air pollution could increase risk of autism

Siblings of autistic children are more likely than siblings of children without the condition to be withdrawn and to have poor social skills. They also fare worse socially and emotionally, by various measures, than do siblings of children with intellectual disability or other forms of developmental delay.

However, they are no more likely than controls to have outward behavior problems, such as aggression. And their strategies for coping with adversity are not unusual, either.

The findings overall suggest that siblings of autistic children would benefit from early behavioral treatments.

Read full, original post: Siblings of children with autism have social, emotional problems

Outbreak
Outbreak Daily Digest
Biotech Facts & Fallacies
Genetics Unzipped
Infographic: How dangerous COVID mutant strains develop

Infographic: How dangerous COVID mutant strains develop

Sometime in 2019, probably in China, SARS CoV-2 figured out a way to interact with a specific "spike" on the ...
Untitled

Philip Njemanze: Leading African anti-GMO activist claims Gates Foundation destroying Nigeria

Nigerian anti-GMO activist, physician, and inventor pushes anti-gay and anti-GMO ...

Most Popular

News on human & agricultural genetics and biotechnology delivered to your inbox.
glp menu logo outlined

Newsletter Subscription

Optional. Mail on special occasions.
Send this to a friend