Project Detail
Interagency Autism Coordinating Committee (IACC) logo
Office of Autism Research Coordination (OARC) logo

Investigating gene-environment interaction in autism: Air pollution x genetics  

While genetic risk factors are widely implicated in ASDs, the current increase in prevalence is not likely to result from genetic factors alone and it is possible that environmental factors may augment known genetic risks. In this study, researchers seek to examine if air pollution due to traffic, a common environmental exposure, increases risk for ASD. Using data collected as part of the Childhood Autism Risks from Genetics and the Environment Study (CHARGE), researchers will assess the role of traffic related air pollutants in autism risk based on monthly exposure at each child's home during prenatal, perinatal, and postnatal time points. Researchers will also examine genes that process pollutants in the body to determine if they are different in children with and without autism and to see if these genes interact with air pollution to increase autism risk. This work may provide important insight into what causes ASDs and evidence for risk due to a common environmental exposure (traffic-related air pollution). Project Status


Funder National Institutes of Health
Fiscal Year Funding $280,078.00
Current Award Period 2009-2011
Project Number 5R21ES019002-02
Principal Investigator McConnell, Rob
Received ARRA Funding? Yes
Strategic Plan Question Question 3: What Caused This To Happen And Can This Be Prevented? (Causes)
Subcategory Gene-Environment
Strategic Plan Objective Green dot: Objective has greater than or equal to the recommended funding. 3LD. Support ancillary studies within one or more large-scale, population-based surveillance and epidemiological studies, including U.S. populations, to collect data on environmental factors during preconception, and during prenatal and early postnatal development, as well as genetic data, that could be pooled (as needed), to analyze targets for potential gene/environment interactions by 2015. IACC Recommended Budget: $44,400,000 over 5 years.
Federal or Private? Federal
Institution University of Southern California
State/Country California
Web Link 1 Investigating gene-environment interaction in autism: Air pollution x genetics (External web link)
Web Link 2 No URL available.
Web Link 3 No URL available.
History/Related Projects Investigating gene-environment interaction in autism: Air pollution X Genetics | $297,117.00 | 2009 | 1R21ES019002-01