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Submitted by Kari Stoever on

Great article. We must be mindful of the emerging science behind epigenetics and trauma. There are heritable risks passed generation to generation when individuals and populations are exposed to trauma.

At the extreme end of the abuse spectrum, the women who lived through the worst physical and emotional abuse in childhood were 60 percent more likely to have children with autism than women not exposed to abuse. Teaming up with Marc Weiskopf, SD ’06, associate professor of environmental and occupational epidemiology, Roberts discovered that women who have experienced abuse by their intimate partner in the past two years are twice as likely to have a child with autism as women who did not experience it.

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