Correlations in the incidences of autism and the exposure to electromagnetic radiation have been established – with exponential growth in both over the last two decades. Once very rare, affecting less than 1-10 children per 10,000, autism now has a prevalence of 116 in 10,000. Though greater awareness and better diagnosis account for part of this rise, a number of studies which controlled for diagnostic criteria have found at least a 10-fold increase in prevalence. There have also been recent studies, such as R.C. Kane’s study in Medical Hypotheses, 62 (2004), showing that children developing autism were exposed in utero to higher levels of electromagnetic radiation than control populations.
While correlations have been shown, causality and biological mechanisms for the impact of electromagnetic radiation have not been proven. However, it has been hypothesized in R. Lathe’s research “Microwave electromagnetic radiation and autism” in Electronic Journal of Applied Psychology: Innovations in Autism (2009) that domestic microwave exposure could interfere with neurotransmitter functioning, therefore impacting brain development.