2010-12-17 Fast Lane to Autism - Living Near Freeways

Autism More Likely in Kids Whose Moms Live Near Freeways



Having a mother who lived within 1,000 feet of a freeway while pregnant doubles a child's odds of having autism.

The finding comes from a study looking at environmental factors that might play a role in autism. University of Southern California researcher Heather E. Volk, PhD, MPH, and colleagues collected data from 304 California children with confirmed autism and from 259 children who developed normally.

"It has been estimated that 11% of the U.S. population lives within 100 meters [328 feet] of a four-lane highway, so a causal link to autism or other neurodevelopmental disorders would have broad public health implications," the researchers note.(Read entire article)

2010-12-17 Study Finds Link Between Autism, Air Pollutants


Researchers have found that children who live near freeways at birth have twice the risk of autism, suggesting that environmental factors may play a role in the disorder's growing incidence.

A study by researchers at the Saban Research Institute of Children's Hospital Los Angeles found that babies who lived within 1,000 feet of a freeway, but not a major road, were at risk.

Lead researcher Helen Volk says that may be due to the type and high level of pollutants on a freeway. (Read entire article)