Dr. Stone and the READi Lab are part of a national team that will study the baby teeth of later-born siblings of children with ASD to learn more about risk factors for ASD. Right now you may be thinking, “Baby teeth? Really?” Well, it turns out that we can learn about a person’s exposure to environmental chemicals by studying their teeth. This project will examine the extent to which genetic susceptibility for ASD and prenatal exposure to chemicals interact to increase a child’s risk for developing ASD. Children’s teeth will be examined for levels of organic pollutants that they might have been exposed to in the womb, during a critical time for brain development. This study was one of several funded by National Institutes of Health (NIH) as part of it Environmental Influences on Child Health Outcomes Initiative (ECHO).
We are excited to be involved as a site for the ASD Cohort Study. Families who have participated in some of our previous research projects may be contacted regarding their interest in participating in in this study. Save those baby teeth! To learn more about the ASD Cohort Study, visit the UW Today article, and to learn more about the larger ECHO Initiative, visit the dedicated NIH webpage.