Male Gender Bias in Autism and Pediatric Autoimmunity


Address for correspondence and reprints: Kevin G. Becker, Suite 100, Room 4B122, 251 Bayview Boulevard, Biomedical Research Center, National Institute on Aging, National Institutes of Health, Baltimore, MD 21224. E-mail:


Male bias in both autism and pediatric autoimmune disease is thought to involve hormonal perturbations in pregnancy or early childhood in the context of genetic control. These early molecular events, at a time of rapid development, are intimately linked to concurrent development in the brain and immune system. It is suggested here that these early regulatory events may overlap between autism and autoimmunity in determining male sex bias and may provide evidence of an etiological link among autism, immune dysregulation, and autoimmune disease. Autism Res 2012,••:••–••. Published 2012 International Society for Autism Research, Wiley Periodicals, Inc.†