The Smithsonian Magazine reported on the story of the Bak family and the Autism Sisters Project, an ASF scientific initiative determined to understand the disparity of autism diagnoses between boys and girls and the potential female protective effect. Through the study of the unaffected sisters of people with autism, the goal is to build a large genetic database that researchers can use to explore this phenomenon and discover how the protective factor can be harnessed to help people with autism of both sexes. Additionally, the project aims to study and understand the differences across the lifespan between males and females with autism and their family members. Read the article here and learn more about the Autism Sisters Project here.
The goal of the Autism Sisters Project is to build a large genetic database that researchers can use to explore the sex difference in autism diagnoses between boys and girls and discover how the potential protective factor, known as the female protective effect, can be harnessed to help people with autism of both sexes. NBC New York spoke with the Mullers, a family participating in the study, as well as with ASF Chief Science Officer Dr. Alycia Halladay and the Seaver Autism Center team at Mount Sinai in New York. You can watch the news clip here.