A group of UF Health researchers is using cells from patients and their family members to learn more about the effects of asparagine synthetase deficiency. An absent enzyme causes the disorder, which keeps brain cells from developing and growing normally. ASD causes children to have a small head and brain as well as epilepsy-like seizures and other problems, according to Michael S. Kilberg, Ph.D., and Robert McKenna, Ph.D., both biochemistry professors in the UF College of Medicine. Because there is no simple test for ASD, each child known to have the disease has been identified through genetic sequencing. Researchers hope to develop a test for ASD and possibly a way to detect it before a child is born.