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The Autism Gene: The Next Step in Human Evolution?

Updated on June 2, 2017
Our Genes can tell us alot about who we are and what we are capable of.
Our Genes can tell us alot about who we are and what we are capable of.

Autism Gene Linked to Intelligence

A recent study in Scotland has found a link between the Gene associated with Autism and a persons intelligence.

The study found that those with the Autism Gene also had a higher IQ than those without. This means that an individual who carries the Gene but is not autistic has an advantage over those who do not. It also shows that being Autistic does not mean a person is thick. In fact it is quite the opposite in a lot of cases as lots of sufferers have a good to high IQ, they just cannot use it to the same advantage that a carrier of the Gene can.

What is Autism?

Autism is a developmental disorder where sufferers often find it hard interact with others and make friends. They can also find it had to cope with sounds, smells and lighting of a room or building.

Autism is a broad spectrum disorder and every sufferer is different. Some are really good academically where others struggle. For some of those that struggle however it may not be a lack of intelligence that holds them back but their study environment. However there are those who do have leaning disabilities as part of their symptoms.

What do the studies findings mean for the future of the human race?

The studies findings show that if the Gene can be passed on through the Generations it will make the human race more intelligent. However passing on the Gene comes with the risk of creating more autistic individuals who while possibly having a higher Intelligence rating may not be able to function well around others.

My Own Experience

When I was younger I showed signs that could have placed me on the Autism Spectrum like my short attention span. However nothing was ever diagnosed back then. Today I suffer from Bi-Polar Disorder which can also be traced to the Autism Gene which I do carry. I struggle socially at times find it hard to be in some buildings, the latter being especially true while I was at college and I walked out and did not finish the course. I just felt ill in certain classrooms due to lighting and smells.

My partner also exibited the signs as a child. We both have IQs over 125 which is classed as above average and our daughter who is seven showed a higher than average IQ when she was tested. She does exibit signs of mild autism as she has a short attention span.

Conclusion

Yes the gene can create more intelligent people but it is of no evolutionary use to us if a large percentage of those people have the developmental, psychological, neurological, chromosomal, or genetic disorders that are associated with Autism.

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    • annart profile image

      Ann Carr 2 years ago from SW England

      Ah yes - those Catholic schools had a lot to answer for. Thankfully, they are much better now.

    • brutishspoon profile image
      Author

      Amy 2 years ago from Darlington, England

      My mom was one of those how ended up in a corner with a dunces hat on her head. Nasty Nuns

    • annart profile image

      Ann Carr 2 years ago from SW England

      How true that is! I can remember class-mates from the 50s and 60s who suffered because teachers and pupils thought they were thick or lazy; looking back I can see that some had one or other of those difficulties we're talking about - a tragedy that they weren't recognised.

      Ann

    • brutishspoon profile image
      Author

      Amy 2 years ago from Darlington, England

      Thanks I'm still looking into the research. I can remeber a lad from my class at primary school being sent to the local special school before we left for senior school. He was originally classed as naughty but was diagnosed as autistic or ADHD. He definitely was not thick.

      I have also had the pleasure of working with sufferers when I coached Athletics. Sport is a great therapy for lots of mental illnesses.

    • annart profile image

      Ann Carr 2 years ago from SW England

      Interesting! Short attention spans go with so many diagnoses, such as Dyslexia, ADHD, Autism and others. So many of these also overlap so it can be difficult to define which is which. Many concentrate on the labels which you obviously do not; it is far more positive to highlight the attributes of that person and develop those, whilst helping them overcome any difficulties with practical techniques and therapy.

      Good to know that intelligence usually goes with this, as it does often with dyslexics.

      It would be interesting to know more of the ins and outs of autism for those who haven't a clue what it is or what it means to those who have it. That would elevate this hub from great to superb!

      Ann