Autistic brains are heavier: study

The brains of boys with autism are heavier and contain many more neurons than those without the disorder, US researchers say.

The study, while small, suggests brain overgrowth may be occurring in the womb, according to the findings published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Researchers carried out post-mortem examinations on the brains of seven autistic boys, aged between two and 16, most of whom had died by drowning.

The 16-year-old’s cause of death was undetermined and one eight-year-old died of muscle cancer.

When they compared them to a control group of six boys without autism who died in accidents, they found the brains of autistic boys had 67 per cent more neurons in the prefrontal cortex and were nearly 18 per cent heavier than normal brain weight for age — via

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