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With cases of autism and ASD increasing significantly over recent years, and early intervention leading to significantly better outcomes for the individual, a reliable method of early diagnosis is becoming vital.

Currently, diagnoses are based solely on observations of behaviour, however, a physiological test that could work alongside these observation-based methods is becoming increasingly important.

Researchers have found that observing the components of an individual’s saliva could help to lead to such a test. A pilot study has been carried out, which compares the saliva of those with ASD with a control group. This small study found that there was a statistically significant difference in the levels of some proteins found between these two groups. These proteins are related to the immune and gastrointestinal  systems – individuals with ASD are known to typically suffer with conditions of these two systems.

Although in the early stages of the research, this could prove immensely important in getting individuals with ASD the early intervention they deserve and need in order to thrive.

For further information on this study, click here.

Reference: Autism Res 2015. © 2015 International Society for Autism Research, Wiley Periodicals, Inc