LOCAL NEWS

Researchers using dirty diapers to develop new autism test

Sep 29, 2022, 10:13 AM | Updated: Feb 14, 2023, 12:38 pm

PROVO, Utah — A group of researchers at Brigham Young University is looking for ways to detect autism in children earlier. And they’re using dirty diapers to do it.

Associate Professor Dr. Rebecca Lundwall is hoping to find a new way to test for autism in younger kids.

She’s collecting samples from dirty diapers to help find links between what’s in that diaper and what’s going on in the brain.

“Some of the biproducts of the bacteria that live in your gastrointestinal tract, produce precursors to neurotransmitters that act on your brain,” Lundwall said.

Lundwall is hoping this could be used in the future to develop a biological test for autism in young children.

“I really feel like I would have made a big difference in the world if we can catch these kids earlier, get them the kind of help they need. So that they can live full, happy lives,” Lundwall said. “That would just make me so happy.”

She’s asking for families with toddlers to help join their study.

They are need of several control families with toddlers with no known relatives with autism.

Participants would not actually send any dirty diapers into the mail. Dr. Lundwall says they will mail parents special collection equipment.

To take part, email the research team at: cogndevelopment@gmail.com.

KSL 5 TV Live

Local News

Follow @KSL5TVLike us on Facebook...

Eliza Pace

Got tumbleweeds? People might be willing to buy them

Several cities around Utah faced an Armageddon of tumbleweeds including Eagle Mountain, Daybreak, South Jordan, and Grantsville.  However, despite the challenge, residents of these cities may be sitting on their next business opportunity. 

2 hours ago

FILE: The sun is seen in full eclipse over a park on Aug. 21, 2017, in Hiawatha, Kansas. Millions o...

Josh Ellis

Utahns will have to travel to catch the best part of April’s total solar eclipse

2023's eclipse gave thousands of Utahns a chance to see its "ring of fire," but the 2024 total solar eclipse will require some travel to get the full experience.

2 hours ago

Several police SUVs parked in a parking lot as Salt Lake City Police investigate a workplace shooti...

Eliza Pace

Victim, gunman in SLC workplace shooting identified by police

Two men involved in a workplace shooting on Sunday in Salt Lake City were identified by police. 

6 hours ago

Elder Mack Jared Chappell, a missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints died Sa...

Mark Jones

Church missionary dies from unknown medical condition

A missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has died, according to the church.

21 hours ago

The family of a teenager who died following a crash in Lehi last Saturday said his legacy is living...

Brianna Chavez

Family of 17-year-old who died after Lehi motorcycle crash say he saved lives by donating organs

The family of a teenager who died following a crash in Lehi last Saturday said his legacy is living on after his organs were donated to several people.

22 hours ago

Salt Lake City police say two people have died in a workplace shooting Sunday afternoon. (Salt Lake...

Shelby Lofton and Mark Jones

Two people dead in a workplace shooting, Salt Lake City police say

Salt Lake City police said two people have died in a workplace shooting Sunday afternoon.

23 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

Modern chandelier hanging from a white slanted ceiling with windows in the backgruond...

Lighting Design

Light Up Your Home With These Top Lighting Trends for 2024

Check out the latest lighting design trends for 2024 and tips on how you can incorporate them into your home.

Technician woman fixing hardware of desktop computer. Close up....

PC Laptops

Tips for Hassle-Free Computer Repairs

Experiencing a glitch in your computer can be frustrating, but with these tips you can have your computer repaired without the stress.

Close up of finger on keyboard button with number 11 logo...

PC Laptops

7 Reasons Why You Should Upgrade Your Laptop to Windows 11

Explore the benefits of upgrading to Windows 11 for a smoother, more secure, and feature-packed computing experience.

Stylish room interior with beautiful Christmas tree and decorative fireplace...

Lighting Design

Create a Festive Home with Our Easy-to-Follow Holiday Prep Guide

Get ready for festive celebrations! Discover expert tips to prepare your home for the holidays, creating a warm and welcoming atmosphere for unforgettable moments.

Battery low message on mobile device screen. Internet and technology concept...

PC Laptops

9 Tips to Get More Power Out of Your Laptop Battery

Get more power out of your laptop battery and help it last longer by implementing some of these tips from our guide.

Users display warnings about the use of artificial intelligence (AI), access to malicious software ...

Les Olson

How to Stay Safe from Cybersecurity Threats

Read our tips for reading for how to respond to rising cybersecurity threats in 2023 and beyond to keep yourself and your company safe.

Researchers using dirty diapers to develop new autism test