Studies have shown that mineral imbalances in children with autism manifests as a result of an excess of some elements and a deficit of others. These studies also add that environmental factors may contribute to the pathogenesis of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Indeed, trace elements and toxic elements seem to play an important role in the homeostasis of the body. The objective of this work is to evaluate the concentration of essential heavy metals in the hair of autistic children. This work was carried out with the help of families whose children have autism. The study included 40 children with ASD and 40 matched controls without ASD with an average age of 4 ± 1.17 years for the entire sample. We opted for a sample of hair that is the best indicator of a given mineral in the body. Indeed hair samples of 80 boys and girls were carefully packed and sent to the laboratory for analysis. The result revealed a level of potentially toxic metals in the hair of children with autism; the concentration of lead (Pb), mercury (Hg) and uranium (Ur) was higher than the controls. For the other metals, no significant difference was found between the affected group and the controls. The abundance of toxic metals in the hair of our cohort leads us to conclude that these heavy metals probably play a role in the development of ASD.
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