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Diagnosed Autism Linked to Maternal Grandmother’s Smoking During Pregnancy

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posted on Apr, 28 2017 @ 08:46 PM
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neurosciencenews.com...


Scientists from the University of Bristol have looked at all 14,500 participants in Children of the 90s and found that if a girl’s maternal grandmother smoked during pregnancy, the girl is 67% more likely to display certain traits linked to autism, such as poor social communication skills and repetitive behaviours.

The team also found that if the maternal grandmother smoked, this increased by 53% the risk of her grandchildren having a diagnosed autism spectrum disorder (ASD).

These discoveries suggest that if a female is exposed to cigarette smoke while she is still in the womb, it could affect the developing eggs – causing changes that may eventually affect the development of her own children. Further research is now needed to find out what these molecular changes might be, and to see whether the same associations are present in other groups of people.

Unlike the analysis of autistic traits, which was based on over 7,000 participants, the 177 diagnosed with ASD were too few to analyse grandsons and granddaughters separately


I'd first draw your attention to the last, bolded sentence. Tihs mkes me happy, as errors in sample size have created some issues in review of journal papers across a broad spectrum of science. Behavioral science is most dogged, and seeing some solid statistical practices being used gives me faith in the research.

I have no skin in this game, as no one is the family is diagnosed. Altough I see quite a few of us o the spectrum behaviorally, so who know what could come from the next generation.

I can resolutely encourage any smokers to stop smoking tomorrow. Today if you can. The sooner you stop, the better your survival will be, and the higher your quality of life will be (assuming you don't die next week from something not smoking related, anyway). Now it looks like you aren't just improving your own health, though. So maybe it'll cause a few more to quit.

Im about a year and a half cigarette free myself (i cheat by vaping). Had to throw that in because thats what you do when you quit smoking.




posted on Apr, 28 2017 @ 09:22 PM
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a reply to: bigfatfurrytexan

Seeing how so many women smoked, during the 40s, 50s, 60s and 70s, like "Mad Men", you'd think that there would be a lot more Autistic female people walking around than reported. Or, maybe Autistic mannerism had just become so normalized that its just seen as a "personality quirk" and/or treated as a female mental illness, attention disorder, or worse as insanity.


edit on 28-4-2017 by windword because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 28 2017 @ 09:27 PM
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a reply to: windword

I believe me, my oldest son, and my youngest sister all fall on the shallow end of the spectrum somewhere. I also think it pretty prevalent. I have 3 nephews that all 3 appear to have varying traits that are autistic. The middle one is the most profound.

My mother and her siblings lived on Kwajalein in the mid to late 60's while my grandfather worked on coolant systems in the missile silo's. I think this explains all sorts of weird issues in our family, like lupus among 3 females in my generation. I have some pretty interesting autoimmune glitches, myself. Although im not the mess i may make myself sound like, LOL. But my ability to focus for hours on mundane tasks is an example.



posted on Apr, 28 2017 @ 09:32 PM
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originally posted by: windword
a reply to: bigfatfurrytexan

Seeing how so many women smoked, during the 40s, 50s, 60s and 70s, like "Mad Men", you'd think that there would be a lot more Autistic female people walking around than reported. Or, maybe Autistic mannerism had just become so normalized that its just seen as a "personality quirk" and/or treated as a female mental illness, attention disorder, or worse as insanity.

Well, that could explain a lot about some of the women i know. I'm willing to bet that this trend can extend to males as well. It just states that the sample size just wasn't large enough to make that claim.

So we can send all of our medical bills straight to big tobacco right? This pretty much settles it. How many politicians and doctors have been paid to hide or even stop studies like these?
edit on 28-4-2017 by Woodcarver because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 28 2017 @ 10:34 PM
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Not sold on the study...yet.
I have a large family. Father was one of 5, Mother was the youngest of seven.
No autism on either side. Smoking was a way of life for those folks. Each sibling had at least 2-6 kids, and those kids had kids. Still no kids placed on a spectrum.

Not saying it isn't a factor. I'd point more toward above ground nuclear testing and chromosome damage coupled with petrochemical fertilizers being dumped on crops.



posted on Apr, 28 2017 @ 10:44 PM
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a reply to: bigfatfurrytexan

So I guess if your grandparents heated their home with wood, then the entire family should be autistic???

Really bigfatfurrytexn???? is this some kind of joke?



posted on Apr, 28 2017 @ 10:45 PM
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originally posted by: windword
a reply to: bigfatfurrytexan

Seeing how so many women smoked, during the 40s, 50s, 60s and 70s, like "Mad Men", you'd think that there would be a lot more Autistic female people walking around than reported. Or, maybe Autistic mannerism had just become so normalized that its just seen as a "personality quirk" and/or treated as a female mental illness, attention disorder, or worse as insanity.



that`s the first thing I thought too.
if there is a %67 chance that the grandchildren of smokers will have autistic traits, wouldn`t that also mean that %67 of the grandchildren of smokers will have autistic traits?
with the amount of people who smoked during the 40`s 50`s and 60`s ( when smoking was considered safe) wouldn`t that mean that %67 of the kids today would have autistic traits?

smoking has been around for a long time and a lot more people smoked 100 years ago than smoke today, so does that mean our grandparents had a %67 of having autistic traits also? so, why haven`t we heard about all the autistic people that were around in the 1920`s, 1930`s 1940`s etc?

if that %67 is true now than it had to be true also way back when people first started smoking and yet we have no proof or records of an austism epidemic ( like we have today) from hundreds of years ago.


Tobacco was introduced to France in 1556, Portugal in 1558, Spain in 1559, and England in 1565


people have been smoking tobacco since at least the 1500`s, so where was all the autism in the 16700`s? 1700`s? 1800`s? 1900`s?

I think this whole "scientific" study is BS!
edit on 28-4-2017 by Tardacus because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 28 2017 @ 10:48 PM
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a reply to: TiredofControlFreaks

Im almost afraid to answer, as it should already be readily apparent that I didn't write this nor participate beyond sharing it.

Im sure you could reach out to the authors of the paper and ask them.



posted on Apr, 28 2017 @ 10:50 PM
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that`s the first thing I thought too.
if there is a %67 chance that the grandchildren of smokers will have autistic traits, wouldn`t that also mean that %67 of the grandchildren of smokers will have autistic traits?
with the amount of people who smoked during the 40`s 50`s and 60`s ( when smoking was considered safe) wouldn`t that mean that %67 of the kids today would have autistic traits?

smoking has been around for a long time and a lot more people smoked 100 years ago than smoke today, so does that mean our grandparents had a %67 of having autistic traits also? so, why haven`t we heard about all the autistic people that were around in the 1920`s, 1930`s 1940`s etc?

if that %67 is true now than it had to be true also way back when people first started smoking and yet we have no proof or records of an austism epidemic ( like we have today) from hundreds of years ago.


Tobacco was introduced to France in 1556, Portugal in 1558, Spain in 1559, and England in 1565


people have been smoking tobacco since at least the 1500`s, so where was all the autism in the 1600`s? 1700`s? 1800`s? 1900`s?

I think this whole "scientific" study is bs
edit on 28-4-2017 by Tardacus because: (no reason given)

edit on 28-4-2017 by Tardacus because: (no reason given)

edit on 28-4-2017 by Tardacus because: (no reason given)

edit on 28-4-2017 by Tardacus because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 28 2017 @ 10:58 PM
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a reply to: bigfatfurrytexan

lol - sorry I didn't get the sarcasm.

Its amazing that this thing was actually published. I wonder how many breathless antismokers are blaming smoking for autism now. Is there anything they don't blame smoking for?



posted on Apr, 28 2017 @ 11:05 PM
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a reply to: Tardacus

Perhaps there is an additive that is to blame in some brands and not others.

67%, when not gained through a p-hacking exercise, is pretty relevant and worth further consideration. No study is worth anything as a monolith, however.

They were fairly honest in the analysis, and excluded analysis on a sample size of 77 people. So i can give them some credit for what appears to be thoughtful and ethical study. Unless i get interested, ill likely never follow up without having more news circulate on more findings, honestly. But there are ATS members who will find this interesting.



posted on Apr, 28 2017 @ 11:11 PM
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originally posted by: bigfatfurrytexan
a reply to: windword

I believe me, my oldest son, and my youngest sister all fall on the shallow end of the spectrum somewhere. I also think it pretty prevalent. I have 3 nephews that all 3 appear to have varying traits that are autistic. The middle one is the most profound.

My mother and her siblings lived on Kwajalein in the mid to late 60's while my grandfather worked on coolant systems in the missile silo's. I think this explains all sorts of weird issues in our family, like lupus among 3 females in my generation. I have some pretty interesting autoimmune glitches, myself. Although im not the mess i may make myself sound like, LOL. But my ability to focus for hours on mundane tasks is an example.



Lupus is an autoimmune issue, I have the genes for it and my cousin died of it. I also have some genes that protect me from getting the disease, but these genetic variances also give me some problems of their own. If I try to correct the methyl cycle, I risk the Lupus coming out. So I am trying to split the difference. My sister had RA pretty bad, I also do not want that to be expressed. The same pathways can accentuate that.

A lot of people have the Autism genetics, but not that many got autism. Even with so many people smoking back then. I looked over an article that adressed the parameters of this research and evaluated it. There is a link, but it may not even be the tobacco use, people who smoke do not usually eat healthy, and many actually smoke as a treatment for underlying psychological issues. Remember, these smokers may have needed some treatment for their anxiety or skitzo and there was none to be had at the time. Also, taking antidepressants and antianxiety drugs has side effects of their own. They may someday be found to cause autism too.

So I do not put much faith in this particular research. But here is one thing, smoking when a woman is pregnant is not very good for other reasons than autism. I have looked into a lot of research on smoking and see a lot of problems with consensus of the day. They try to blame everything on smoking, when in fact there are other more important factors they should be looking at. Is Monsanto funding this research to steer us away from Roundup? Is the FDA grasping at straws to lead us away from vaccines possibly causing an increase in autism?

A lot of kids were a little autistic when I was in school, most were just late bloomers and they normalized after they got older and settled into jobs. Not everyone needs to be a rocket scientist or computer whiz. Not everyone has to go to college, there are a lot of respectable jobs out there that people who are not really smart can do. I have a problem with the direction society is going in. It used to be that people who were a little slow got jobs in small and large factories and made a living and lived their life just fine. some got married, some stayed single, but were happy because they were self supporting. What happened to the owners of the factories that supplied these jobs. I think their factories died and China got the jobs. These workers usually had decent bennies too. They were not ridiculed by the other workers and anyone cutting them down because of their limitations usually got warned by other workers or canned by management. It was rough on these kids in special ed. I was friends with three or four of these guys, one of the smartest kids in school allying himself with the special ed kids. I felt they needed my friendship, even back in the sixties and seventies kids were often ruthless.



posted on Apr, 28 2017 @ 11:13 PM
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a reply to: TiredofControlFreaks

There is no argument on behalf of smoking modern American mass produced tobacco. Raw, unmodified tobacco is a different story and is actually not very pleasurable at all in any use. But its ritual use is relevant. And its apparent (ill advised) use as a treatment for tuberculosis made it spread among "westerners" (aka, white people)

I can't imagine people would smoke were it not for corporate involvement in creating a product that is pretty different than what was used ancestrally.

It would be nice to see additional studies done to try to find some replicable results. National variation in product may make it more difficult as there is bound to be variation due to that. But there are multiple friction points between modern tobacco use and human health. Im hoping more study is done on genetic effect. And i wouldnt be surprised if we found that it was an additive responsible for any potential effects.



posted on Apr, 28 2017 @ 11:19 PM
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a reply to: rickymouse

I don't know if i equate "slow" with autism.

social disorders seem to creep in there somewhere, too, along with some behavioral disorders. Intellect likely isn't as affected as you'd assume (with some examples of autistic kids who appear profoundly retarded being able to write eloquent letters to their parents, expressing a rich and full persona locked away inside...i wish i could find that particular story, it was heart wrecnhing).

I've worked in mental health and can express a difference between autistic and MR or multiple disability, although there is overlap on the venn diagram im sure.



posted on Apr, 28 2017 @ 11:33 PM
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I think that Autism is an immune disorder caused by a variety of things. I think some people are more susceptible to getting it than others. It's like getting type 2 diabetes, one person can drink a bunch of soda everyday and not get it and someone else who has an ok diet ends up developing it because they are sensitive to higher carbohydrate intake.

I've done a little bit of research on Autism and I know that Autistic people have low vitamin D and this thread got me curious if there was a link to cigarettes and low vitamin D and sure enough there is. Smoking cigarettes lowers vitamin D www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov... this is a study of pregnant women that smoke. It lowers vitamin D in both the mother and child. It's interesting that the grandmother can pass down autism to the grandchild. It may have something to do with epigenetic mutation of how the body produces vitamin D.

Vitamin D plays a big role in the immune system in conjunction with some other things. When I was reading about vaccines, I read about this doctor that found a protein that binds with vitamin D to attack viruses and cancer. The protein combines with vitamin D with the help of the gut bacteria to form GcMAF. GcMAF is in competition with another substance called nagalase. Nagalase is an enzyme secreted by viruses and cancer cells. When one is high the other is low. Nagalase prevents vitamin D from binding to the Gc. So when you have low vitamin D, you can't make enough GcMAF and the nagalase goes high. Autistic people have low D, low GcMAF, and high nagalse. People with cancer, aids, alzheimers, and a lot of other chronic diseases all have high nagalase.

If you lower gut bacteria, vitamin d, or get high nagalase, there is an increased chance of passing on autism or the child contracting autism during early childhood. Babies have weak immune systems to begin with. Killing off their gut bacteria with glyphosate infected soy based formula probably isn't good. The mother eating pesticides in food, hydrogenated oils, gmos, and other garbage that kills off her gut bacteria is not good for the pregnancy. Staying inside all day or smoking cigarettes lower vitamin d and in combo with the low gc that the reduced gut bacteria are producing is setting people up to be weak against viruses and cancer.

All of these things are like adding logs to the fire. Smoking cigs is probably a small pieces of the contributing factors. I don't think cigarettes alone cause autism. But when you throw in poor diet and lifestyle, eventually the fire is too big. You can't put out a forest fire with a garden hose. Eventually there is no turning back which is why I compared it to diabetes earlier. All the factors build up and its like flipping a switch. But some people do all the wrong things and their kids are fine and some other people have only a couple factors and they end up passing on autism.

Not to change the topic but I think this is relevant. With babies already set up with low gut bacteria and weak immune systems, the thing that flips the switch to contracting autism is getting high doses of nagalase. What has nagalase in it that almost all babies get these days? You guessed it, vaccines.



posted on Apr, 28 2017 @ 11:43 PM
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originally posted by: bigfatfurrytexan
a reply to: rickymouse

I don't know if i equate "slow" with autism.

social disorders seem to creep in there somewhere, too, along with some behavioral disorders. Intellect likely isn't as affected as you'd assume (with some examples of autistic kids who appear profoundly retarded being able to write eloquent letters to their parents, expressing a rich and full persona locked away inside...i wish i could find that particular story, it was heart wrecnhing).

I've worked in mental health and can express a difference between autistic and MR or multiple disability, although there is overlap on the venn diagram im sure.


Some of the kids in special ed were somewhat autistic, so were some of the kids in school that weren't in special ed back those days. The kids that they show with autism on TV are the most extreme cases. I know a lot of people now that have kids diagnosed with autism when they are young, those kids will have a little problems, but most will be able to fit in just like they did before in the years I was in school.

The thing is that now, there are many more instances of autism that are at a higher level than before. Now, back in the seventies, a lot of people smoked. That would mean there should be a lot of autism in the kids my daughters age. There isn't. It is the kids that were born after the mid to late nineties that the problem came out. A lot less people smoked in my generation than my parents, and there was a big reduction here in my daughters generation smoking.

There is no doubt in my mind that autism has increased the last twenty years, I can see it, but I do know that low level autism was around when I was a kid. Also High level autism was around back then too. The nerds were around back then too. Something is making it progress, and I am sorry, but it is not tobacco. Something else is causing the increase in the severity of the disease, the real reason needs to be found.

There could be a lot of cofactors involved in the research data of that that aren't being considered. Also remember a sixty percent increase of two percent of the general population is not much. I study evidence a lot and I do not feel that tobacco is causing much of the increase in autism, it does effect other things. Now if the mother was a chain smoker, than that is one thing, someone who smoked over two packs a day I will say maybe. But around here, most woman back years ago smoked half of what the men did, they smoked less than a pack a day usually. Also, Tobacco can actually protect the liver from toxic effects of caffeine and ethenol. So that needs to be considered. I can't evaluate how that would relate to pregnant women though, because I have not seen any research taylored to pregnant women in that research.

I hardly ever smoke unless I have coffee or a beer. I don't drink much alcohol anymore, but do drink coffee. If you do not have enough enzymes to break down caffeine, then that cigarette can help with that. It stops the jitters.



posted on Apr, 29 2017 @ 12:13 AM
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a reply to: bigfatfurrytexan

I agree with you on the 'additive" thing

if they can`t trace autism back to the time people first started smoking tobacco than it`s BS, but if they can trace it back to when the tobacco companies starting putting Freon and hundreds of other deadly chemicals in tobacco then smoking tobacco doesn`t contribute to autism, smoking Freon and hundreds of other chemicals might contribute to it.

of course I think the easiest way to start investigating autism is to look back to when we started seeing a lot of cases of it and look at what changed then from 20 or 30 years before then.

people have been smoking tobacco since at least the 1500`s so where are all the cases of autism over the last 500 years?
even if they called it something different back then the symptoms would be obvious to modern doctors.
so, why aren`t we seeing millions of doctor reports from the last 500 years of people who have symptoms of autism?

autism is a uniquely modern phenomenon that is caused by a modern day screw up in medication, vaccines, food etc.
it`s not an age old problem caused by age old habits, this something that is caused by something that has been done recently, within the last 30 years.



posted on Apr, 29 2017 @ 01:34 AM
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a reply to: Tardacus

So you think tobacco had all those added chemicals 500 years ago?



posted on Apr, 29 2017 @ 04:14 AM
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originally posted by: Tardacus

I think this whole "scientific" study is bs





I completely agree with that statement ...

Because that would make my mother responsible for the only autistic child

in our family .... and she neither smoked or drank!! I did not smoke either.



posted on Apr, 29 2017 @ 05:03 AM
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a reply to: bigfatfurrytexan


bigfatfurrytexan

(sigh) you have so disappointed me with your discussion of this study. You seemed to have some grasp of how scientific studies can be biased against behaviors that the government wants to tax and activists want to make their living off of.

If you had read the children of the 90s study, you would have seen that all the participants are from one area of the UK.

The mothers who showed up for this study were older, better educated (older means the genes could have been affected the by the age of the mother). Only about half the participants actually showed up.

The study refers to autism-like behaviors. This is not the same as a diagnosis of autism. If you worked in mental health, then you already know of the difficulty with autism diagnosis and you already know that it is suspected that the "increase in autism" is actually an increase in diagnosis.

You already know that there are many things that could affect the genes. and with Vitamin D deficiency, we already know that UK kids are developing rickets because their mothers won't let them out without sunscreen.

No where in the study is there a smoking gun that definitivey links smoking with autism or with the gene changes and the researchers themselves are very very careful to say that nobody knows what causes autism. There is absolutely no attempt to link the changes seen in the genes with other exposures like alcohol, chemical cleaners, air pollution, pesticides etc.

No explanation is offered as to why smoking in the 90s caused autism but previous generations did not experience autism. And there is no explanation for the sons and grandsons thing.

Your personal campaign to get people to quit smoking has severly biased you on this one.

It is much more likely that the researchers were looking for funding and applied to an anti-smoking grant. This is p-hacking at its finest.



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