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Parental Age Linked to Increased Autism Spectrum Disorder Risk in Children

In a recent study published in JAMA Network Open, “Association of Grandparental and Parental Age at Childbirth With Autism Spectrum Disorder in Children,” a Yale researcher, Dr. Zeyan Liew, and collaborators, investigated ages of parents and grandparents to estimate associations for increased risk for autism spectrum disorders in children using data from health registries available in Denmark. Advanced parental ages have been associated with autism spectrum disorders in children, but scientists are trying to understand the mechanisms to explain the associations. Dr. Liew, from the Yale Center for Perinatal, Pediatric and Environmental Epidemiology, suggested that the age of grandparents at the time of the birth of the parents and future risk for autism spectrum disorders in the grandchildren may indicate possible transmission of autism spectrum disorder risk across generations.

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  • Older parents, grandparents increase austism risk in kids by up to 50%

    In a study published in JAMA Network Open by Dr. Zeyan Liew and colleagues, multiple generations were analyzed for possible associations between autism spectrum disorders and the ages of parents and grandparents using health registry data from Denmark. Other studies have linked older parental age with increased risk for the disorders. However, Dr. Liew and the study team also looked at the ages of grandparents revealing higher risk among grandchildren of maternal grandmothers and grandfathers who were 19 years of age or younger at the time of giving birth to the parents compared to grandchildren of grandparents who were between 25 and 29 years old at the time of giving birth to the parents.

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  • Endocrine Society Educates Congress About the Science of PFAS Exposure

    The Endocrine Society hosted a congressional briefing on November 6th, 2019, on the latest science with policy makers on how federally funded research is helping to understand and address the health effects of exposure to per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, also known as PFAS. Expert scientists gathered to discuss widespread contamination issues and diverse health effects attributed to PFAS exposure. Zeyan Liew, PhD, MPH, from the Yale School of Public Health shared his research exploring the effects of PFAS on maternal thyroid function and neurodevelopmental outcomes in exposed children.

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  • Threat of Toxic Chemicals Draws Scores of Experts to Yale School of Public Health

    A class of manmade chemicals widely used in consumer goods since World War II—the toxicity of which is featured in the current movie Dark Waters—drew dozens of experts from across academia, government and industry to the Yale School of Public Health (YSPH) to assess the threat posed by per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, commonly known as PFAS.

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  • PFAS and Health: Troublesome, Ubiquitous Chemicals to be Examined at YSPH Symposium

    This Friday (December 13, 2019) the Department of Environmental Health Sciences at the Yale School of Public Health will host a symposium on chemicals known as per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS). The day-long event organized by Professor Vasilis Vasiliou will be held in Winslow Auditorium and feature a range of experts from Yale and beyond who will discuss the latest research on PFAS and possible health implications associated with the manmade compounds. Citing scientific research, U.S. Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) recently called for banning the chemicals in food packaging.

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  • High exposure to harmful chemical impacts thyroid hormones in pregnant mothers

    Studies conducted by Assistant Professor, Zeyan Liew, at the Yale School of Public Health, focus on a group of harmful chemicals known as PFAS (per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances) that can affect hormones during pregnancy crucial to fetal development. Efforts are underway by Yale professors, Dr. Krystal Pollitt and Dr. John Fortner, to investigate the chemical structures and ban the use of PFAS as well as determine routes for removing or destroying the substances from the environment.

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  • Leadership Change at the Yale Center for Perinatal Pediatric and Environmental Epidemiology

    On September 1st 2019, Michael B. Bracken, Susan Dwight Bliss Professor Emeritus of Epidemiology relinquished his role as Co-Director of the Yale Center for Perinatal, Pediatric and Environmental Epidemiology to Andrew DeWan, Associate Professor (with tenure) of Epidemiology who will serve as Co-Director with Brian Leaderer, Susan Dwight Bliss Professor of Epidemiology (Environmental Health Sciences).

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