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Centre for Trophoblast Research



I am a medical scientist based at the Autism Research Centre of the University of Cambridge, working with Prof Sir Simon Baron-Cohen. I am currently studying the effects of prenatal steroid hormones on neurodevelopment. I am particularly interested in the role of the placenta as a mediator of sex differences in autism, as well as in the long-term health outcomes of prenatal steroid exposure. My research projects include clinical cohort studies of pregnancy and early infancy, as well as epidemiological studies of steroid-related symptoms in autistic populations. I am collaborating with research teams in the UK, as well as in the Netherlands (Generation R), Germany (Max Planck Institute) and Norway (MoBa). I am now working together with the ‘Tommy’s’ network of maternity wards in Manchester, in order to establish the first dedicated Autism Placenta Biobank. This will enable a detailed study of the interaction between the sex and genetics of the fetus, in the placentas of pregnancies at increased likelihood for autism.


Key publications: 

1) “Foetal oestrogens and autism”, In ‘Molecular Psychiatry’, July 2019, PMID: 31358906

Baron-Cohen S & Tsompanidis A (joint first authors), Auyeung B, Nørgaard-Pedersen B, Hougaard DM, Abdallah M, Cohen A, Pohl A.

2) “Maternal steroid levels and the autistic traits of the mother and infant”, in press, in ‘Molecular Autism’, July 2021

Tsompanidis A., Aydin E., Padaigaitė E., Richards G.,Allison C., Hackett G., Austin T., Baron-Cohen S., Holt R.

3) “Medical symptoms in autistic women”, in press, in ‘Autism’, July 2021

Simantov T, Pohl A.(joint first authors), Tsompanidis A(second author)., Weir E, Lombardo M., Ruigrok A., Smith P, Allison C., Baron-Cohen S., Uzefovsky F.

Doctoral Scientist, Autism Research Centre, Department of Psychiatry, University of Cambridge

Contact Details

Not available for consultancy