Autism is the fastest rising developmental disorder in the industrialized world. Even accounting for better diagnosis, its numbers have increased by an astounding 600% in the last twenty years. Even more shocking is that science cannot say why. Research is inconclusive, but the emerging theme is that autism is triggered by environment, not genetics, and that our toxic lifestyle is now proving too much for children to bear. Some say it’s the canary in the coalmine. Many say it’s an emergency.
Meanwhile, 70% of children with autism exhibit severe gastrointestinal symptoms, prompting some microbiologists to direct their research to an unexpected place – and ask whether autism actually begins in the gut.
The Autism Enigma looks at the progress of an international group of scientists examining the gut’s amazingly diverse, and powerful microbial ecosystem for clues to the baffling disorder, and the extraordinary efforts of parents who have been relentlessly pushing science forward in hopes of finding answers for their children’s condition.