The Familial Risk of Autism is the large study making waves for demonstrating that environmental considerations are roughly equivalent to genetic factors in autism causation. Hopefully funding dollars will begin to flow toward the environmental side of the equation as many have urged for so long. What is not generally mentioned in the media echoes of the study though is that it included many subjects with classic Autistic Disorder as stated in the study abstract in the JAMA:
Put another way subjects were not excluded from the study because they were not high functioning, Asperger's subjects. For this fact alone the study is ground breaking, hopefully shattering the dominant trend of recent years of creating a false "pure autism" by excluding the original, classic autistics, the "vast majority" of whom suffered from intellectual disability, (Yes Emily Willingham and Jon Brock, I said "suffered from").
The "it's gotta be genetic" crowd will still see what they want to see. They will see the genetic half of the autism causation equation and will ignore the environmental half, pretend it doesn't exist as they have done for so long. Likewise the inclusion of a proportionate number of subjects with classic autistic disorder, if discussed by the autism is beautiful crowd at the Thinking Persons Guide to Autism, will be mentioned as a reason to criticize the study. Still, the study does offer more hope of breakthroughs in the rigid mindsets who forbid honest discussion of autism realities be they environmental causation or the harsh realities associated with classic, low functioning autism DISORDERS from which so many who carry the Autistic Disorder diagnosis actually SUFFER.