Tonight we report on the discovery of what may be the biological basis for sudden infant death syndrome, or SIDS. Researchers at Children's Hospital in Boston have found that the brain receptors for serotonin are greatly reduced in children who die of SIDS. You can read an abstract of the research here.
This is nowhere near a cure. But someday it could become a means of identifying the children who are at high risk from dying and intervening to reduce the chances of death. SIDS, which is as old as humanity, has a long, sad history of parents being blamed -- and at times even charged as murderers -- for the deaths of infants six months and under.
Researchers say SIDS requires three conditions: a child six months or younger, an environmental factor such as a lack of oxygen from a bad infection or from a child sleeping face down, and a change in the brain. This research is a giant step because it identifies that brain abnormality and shows there is a biological basis for the condition. We'll tell you more on tonight's broadcast.