Prenatal Contact with Organophosphates and Organochlorine Associated with ASD-Like Behaviors in Children

April 22, 2024

Gestational Exposure to Pesticides May Cause Delayed Neuromotor Development and Increased Oxidative Stress Biomarkers

A new systematic review has examined the relationship between autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and pesticide exposure, considering both human and preclinical studies. This review included 45 human studies and 16 preclinical studies, focusing on various pesticide types like Organophosphates (OP), Organochlorine (OC), Pyrethroid (PT), Neonicotinoid (NN), Carbamate (CM), and mixed exposures. Preclinical studies primarily investigating OP Chlorpyrifos (CPF) indicated a potential association between gestational exposure and increased ASD-like behaviors. Human studies, particularly those focusing on prenatal exposure to OP and OC agents, reported cognitive and behavioral alterations associated with ASD symptoms. Interestingly, the review demonstrated that exposure during specific developmental stages was linked to behavioral markers associated with ASD, such as delayed neuromotor development and increased oxidative stress biomarkers. The work also showed that genetic background and sex played a role, with varying effects observed between male and female mice. Overall, the authors suggest that gestational exposure to specific OP agents may be linked to the clinical signs of ASD, highlighting the need for further research to expand the understanding of ASD-like behaviors in both human and preclinical models.

Original Study 

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