A group of researchers from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) may have found a cure for autism. They discovered that immune cells activated in the mother suffering from a viral infection during pregnancy produce an immune effector molecule called IL-17 which is considered to interfere with brain development.
Researchers also discovered that blocking specific cells during pregnancy could restore normal behavior and brain structure.
However, when the action of Th17 cells (which produced this chemical IL-17 in pregnant mice) was blocked, the chemical reverted the changes and normal structure and function to the brains of the pups was restored.
Further research will need to be conducted before human clinical trials start.