The Association Between Autism and Cerebral Palsy

July 12, 2018 Off By Tyrone Miles

If you are familiar with the disorders of autism and cerebral palsy, you might say that the both of them are way too different. However, recent studies prove otherwise. You see, researchers have found a common genetic signal between the two. Autism is basically a developmental disorder that impairs the ability of the person to interact and communicate. There are different kinds of autism. This might be caused by some differences in genetic and environmental combinations. Based on recent estimates, about one third of people suffering from autism disorder are unable to speak. Cerebral palsy, on the other hand, seems to have nothing in common with autism. This particular disorder is genetically inherited and affects the movements and posture of the person. In addition, it makes various parts of the body unable to move affecting the function of both involuntary and voluntary muscles.

The connection
A recent large-scale research has been done on the genetic expression that is found among children suffering from cerebral palsy. Researchers of the said study have found a common genetic signal between people suffering from cerebral palsy and those suffering from autism. The connection was validated after this group of researchers decided to collaborate with another group of researchers working on cerebral palsy. The second group has basically found a crucial and underlying molecular pathway that is common among a wide range of disease conditions. The lead researcher has discovered that his pathway serves as the most common disability that attacks people during their childhood years and affects two children for every thousand live births.

Highlights of the research
Now, according to past studies and research, both cerebral palsy and autism are disorders of brain development during pregnancy. However, despite this fact, there are still limited studies and evidence that can really point to the main cause of cerebral palsy.

To measure the RNA in the cells of the children who are suffering from cerebral palsy in this study, new sequencing technology of RNA was used. All 182 participants of the study have had the cell lines of their body studied. The results of the study have shown a clear cell signalling disruption as well as some inflammatory pathway disruption that are already present among children who were suffering from autism. These study results clearly show that there is overlapping of the disrupted neurological pathways in children who have cerebral palsy in the same way as the disruptions fond among children with autism disorder. Such a finding is proof enough that there is a common biological connection between two very different conditions as the past knows them. Furthermore, the researchers have even come to conclude that having both diseases coexisting in some people is a clue that there really is a common connection between the two disease conditions.


Such a research is just one of the many current research studies being conducted by legitimate researchers from across the globe. More and more cases of genetic mutations causing cerebral palsy have been found. Such data is utilized in tandem with already available DNA sequence results to improve by twenty-five percent, the number of people with predicted genetic cause for their condition.