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Maternal Immune-Mediated Conditions, Autism Spectrum Disorders, and Developmental Delay

Abstract

The maternal immune system may play a role in offspring neurodevelopment. We examined whether maternal autoimmune disease, asthma, and allergy were associated with child autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and developmental delay without autism (DD) using 560 ASD cases, 391 typically developing controls, and 168 DD cases from the CHildhood Autism Risk from Genetics and the Environment (CHARGE) study. Results from conditional logistic regression demonstrated few significant associations overall. Maternal autoimmune disease was significantly associated with a modest increase in odds of developmental disorders (combined ASD + DD; OR = 1.46, 95 % CI 1.01, 2.09) but not of ASD alone. Associations with certain allergens and onset periods were also suggested. These findings suggest maternal autoimmune disease may modestly influence childhood developmental disorders (ASD + DD).

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Acknowledgments

This work was supported by the following grants: National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences R01 ES015359, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences P01 ES11269, Environmental Protection Agency STAR #R829388 & R833292, and 5-T32MH073124. The authors have no financial relationships relevant to this article or conflicts of interest to disclose.

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Correspondence to Kristen Lyall.

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Appendix: List of Included Maternal Autoimmune Conditions

Appendix: List of Included Maternal Autoimmune Conditions

  1. 1.

    Addison’s disease

  2. 2.

    Adult Still’s disease

  3. 3.

    Alopecia areata

  4. 4.

    Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS)

  5. 5.

    Ankylosing spondylitis

  6. 6.

    Antiphospholipid antibody syndrome

  7. 7.

    Aplastic anemia

  8. 8.

    Autoimmune hepatitis

  9. 9.

    Autoimmune thyroid disease

  10. 10.

    Autoimmune thyroiditis

  11. 11.

    Behcet’s syndrome

  12. 12.

    Celiac disease

  13. 13.

    CREST syndrome/Scleroderma/Progressive systemic sclerosis

  14. 14.

    Crohn’s disease

  15. 15.

    Dermatitis herpetiformis

  16. 16.

    Diabetes-Type I

  17. 17.

    Discoid lupus

  18. 18.

    Eczema/Psoriasis

  19. 19.

    Giant cell arteritis

  20. 20.

    Grave’s disease

  21. 21.

    Guillain–Barre syndrome

  22. 22.

    Hashimoto’s thyroiditis

  23. 23.

    Hemolytic anemia

  24. 24.

    Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)

  25. 25.

    Idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura (ITP)

  26. 26.

    Kawasaki syndrome

  27. 27.

    Meniere’s disease

  28. 28.

    Mixed connective tissue disease

  29. 29.

    Multiple sclerosis

  30. 30.

    Myasthenia gravis

  31. 31.

    Multiple sclerosis

  32. 32.

    Optic neuritis

  33. 33.

    Pemphigus/Pemphigus vulgaris

  34. 34.

    Pernicious anemia

  35. 35.

    Polymyositis/Dermatomyositis

  36. 36.

    Primary biliary cirrhosis

  37. 37.

    Primary Sjogren’s syndrome

  38. 38.

    Psoriasis

  39. 39.

    Raynaud’s disease/phenomenon

  40. 40.

    Reiter’s syndrome/Reiter’s arthritis

  41. 41.

    Rheumatic carditis/Rheumatic heart disease

  42. 42.

    Rheumatoid arthritis (RA)

  43. 43.

    Sarcoidosis

  44. 44.

    Sjogren’s syndrome

  45. 45.

    Stevens-Johnson syndrome

  46. 46.

    Sydenham’s chorea

  47. 47.

    Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE)

  48. 48.

    Systemic sclerosis/Scleroderma

  49. 49.

    Thrombocytopenia

  50. 50.

    Thyroid disease

  51. 51.

    Tourette syndrome

  52. 52.

    Ulcerative colitis

  53. 53.

    Uveitis/Iritis

  54. 54.

    Vasculitis

Note: The most common autoimmune conditions in the study population were thyroid diseases, psoriasis, and rheumatoid arthritis; other conditions were rare and accounted for 5 % or less of autoimmune diseases reported.

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Lyall, K., Ashwood, P., Van de Water, J. et al. Maternal Immune-Mediated Conditions, Autism Spectrum Disorders, and Developmental Delay. J Autism Dev Disord 44, 1546–1555 (2014). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10803-013-2017-2

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Keywords

  • Autoimmune disease
  • Asthma
  • Allergy
  • Autism
  • Developmental delay
  • Maternal risk factors