Study finds brain abnormality that could be linked to sudden infant death syndrome
(CNN) - Sudden infant death syndrome, or SIDS, is the leading cause of death for babies in their first year of life and the cause has been a mystery.
Most of the time it happens when the baby is asleep.
Scientists looked into one theory for the cause of SIDS, which is a disruption of breathing.
A team studied 58 babies who had died of SIDS and compared them to a control group of a dozen babies whose causes of death were unknown.
They found an abnormality in the brain receptor of the SIDS babies.
The receptor is involved in the body’s protective response to low oxygen, causing us to awaken and gasp for air.
An abnormality could interfere with that kick-start breathing process.
The finding suggested that a larger group of SIDS cases may be related to this brain receptor abnormality.
The study was published in the Journal of Neuropathology and Experimental Neurology.
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