Emily Willingham

I am a scientist, writer, and editor, author of The Complete Idiot's Guide to Biology, and an autism parent. I've also contributed to the anthology, Gravity Pulls You In: Perspectives on Parenting Children on the Autism Spectrum, and am the science editor at the wonderful autism resource, the Thinking Person's Guide to Autism. You can find more of my writing at my personal blog, A Life Less Ordinary, where I write about parenting, working, worrying, science, writing, and autism, and at my science blog, The Biology Files, where I write about...well, science. My work also has appeared in national and regional publications, including Backpacker, Texas Parks and Wildlife Magazine, and the Austin-American Statesman. My passions are my family, writing, science, history, Victorian literature, and learning something new every day. 

Another Thing to Worry About? Closely Spaced Second Sibs at Greater Autism Risk

A study coming out in the respected journal Pediatrics reports that second children born soon after their older siblings are at a higher risk of developing autism, a developmental difference or disorder characterized in general by social and communication deficits. Note that even with the increased risk, the overall risk of autism even for these second siblings is still quite small. ...more
My kids were born about 2 years apart from one another and I have 5 kids. My daughter Zoe is the ...more

Two Autism Studies Open the Door to More Questions

Two recent autism-focused studies have generated both discussion and hope: one on early autism diagnosis using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) tests, and the other on mitochondrial function in people with autism. The first study used imaging to detect differences in the brains of autistic males compared to non-autistic males, while the second identified differences in mitochondrial function between autistic and non-autistic children. Both open doors to more research and to intriguing possibilities for diagnosis and therapies, but neither resolves the question of whether these differences exist because of autism, or whether autism exists because of these differences. ...more

Appreciated this post... thanks for writing. more