5.3 Autism genetics are complex
In autism, links are proposed between particular genetic variants, atypical development of the nervous system including the brain, and behavioural differences such as theory of mind difficulty and repetitive tendencies.
However, this is a complex and speculative field. Whereas certain conditions (e.g. cystic fibrosis) result from mutation of just a single gene, autism (except in fairly rare cases) involves the combined effects of variants in many different genes – it is said to be
Besides this complex pattern of genetic influences, the
(See Lai, Lombardo and Baron-Cohen, 2013 for an overview of autism findings like those discussed in this section)