This is a topic that is being discussed since recent research was disclosed this week about the effect parental age has on the chances of having a child with autism.

Yesterday’s New York Times’ article explains the new research that claims that both parents’ ages are linked to the risk of autism.

In a study published in the journal Autism Research, the researchers looked at the effect of paternal and maternal age, being very specific about the risk factors when the parents were close to the same age versus one was considerably older or younger than the other.

The article reports that using a large sample size, the researchers found that “when the father was over 40 and the mother under 30, the increased risk was especially pronounced–59 percent greater than for younger men.” Previous research had already found a link between greater incidence of autism as the paternal age rose.

As a woman’s age rose, so did her risk for having a child with autism.

Each piece of research contributes to our knowledge about autism as we continue to try to put the puzzle pieces together. What causes it? What are the risk factors? What therapies are most effective and so on.

I, for one, appreciate the work being done to answer these questions.