Scientists Find ‘Baffling’ Link Between Autism and Vinyl Flooring

Posted: May 17th, 2010 by Militant Libertarian

from Cryptogon via Scientific American

Children who live in homes with vinyl floors, which can emit chemicals called phthalates, are more likely to have autism, according to research by Swedish and U.S. scientists published Monday.

The study of Swedish children is among the first to find an apparent connection between an environmental chemical and autism.

The scientists were surprised by their finding, calling it “far from conclusive.” Because their research was not designed to focus on autism, they recommend further study of larger numbers of children to see whether the link can be confirmed.

Bernard Weiss, a professor of environmental medicine at University of Rochester and a co-author of the study, said the connection between vinyl flooring and autism “turned up virtually by accident.” He called it “intriguing and baffling at the same time.”

Experts suspect that genetic and environmental factors combine to cause autism, a neurodevelopmental disorder that has increased dramatically in children over the past 20 years.


Comments (1)


Leave a Reply