Developmental Behavioral Pediatrics Research Network
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Maternal Immune Status and Autism Severity

Maternal Immune Status and Autism Severity

Participating Sites: UC David MIND, The Children’s Hositpal of Philadelphia, University of Arkansas


 This study proposes to replicate the presence of maternal autoantibodies in mothers of children with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) in a geographically diverse population (Pennsylvania and Arkansas) utilizing the Developmental-Behavioral Pediatrics Research Network (DBPNet) and determine the association of these antibodies with autism severity and behavioral impairments.


Aim 1: To examine the maternal antibody pattern to autism-specific fetal brain proteins in relation to autism severity and developmental profile/behavioral outcome.

            Hypothesis 1: Children of mothers with autoantibodies reactive to either the 37/73 kDa or the 39/73 kDa target antigens will have more severe autism symptoms and developmental/behavioral impairments, including lower expressive language and increased stereotypic behavior, than children with ASD whose mothers do not have these antibodies. 

            Hypothesis 2 (Exploratory): Children of mothers with 39/73 kDa reactivity will have milder autism and developmental/behavioral deficits than children with maternal 37/73 kDa reactivity.