Frequently Asked Questions

Genetic Data

We understand that some autistic individuals and their family members would like to receive feedback about their DNA. However, we do not currently have the facilities to provide feedback on your genetic data in an ethical manner that minimizes distress with the right support and counselling services. For this reason, we are currently unable to provide feedback  on your genetic data. However, we may consider developing an infrastructure to do so in the future. If this becomes possible, we will contact all participants requesting consent to provide feedback to you about your genetic data.  

Please note, outside of this study, you or your child may be eligible for genetic testing in certain situations. These may include having a developmental delay, a learning disability, and congenital abnormalities. If you think you or your child might be eligible for genetic testing,  please consult your GP to find out if you are eligible for a referral. 

As we are a research study and not a company or a clinical genetics team, we currently do not have the infrastructure to provide you with your genetic data.

Currently, Spectrum 10K plans to study small sections of DNA which are expected to contain genetic factors involved in autism as well as those which contribute to physical and mental health conditions that are common in autistic people. If further funding becomes available, more sections of DNA could be sequenced.

This study does not aim to develop a test for autism. Through increased understanding of the genetic and environmental influences and mechanisms which underlie autism, we hope to develop pathways for improved diagnosis and medical support. However, future knowledge may lead to improved diagnosis through genetic testing. We believe autism is an integral part of human neurodiversity and therefore are ethically opposed to any form of eugenics. 

To explain why this research is important and to break some of the myths surrounding genetic research in autism, watch this video to learn more!