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Autism: A disturbed immune system

Discussion in 'Other Health News and Research' started by Overstressed, Apr 18, 2012.

  1. Overstressed

    Overstressed Senior Member

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    I've found on Sciencedaily.com a quite interesting article:

    "Further Evidence Found of Disturbed Immune System in Autism
    ScienceDaily (Apr. 16, 2012) A University of Kansas Medical Center study found significantly lower levels of several cytokines, the immune systems messengers and regulators, in the plasma of children with autism disorder (AD) compared to that of unrelated healthy siblings from other families who had members with autism spectrum disorders (ASD).

    The study was published in the April 2012 International Journal of Developmental Neuroscience.

    In particular, of the 29 cytokine levels analyzed, the researchers found disturbed levels in five related to the T-helper cell immune system and three involved in hematopoiesis or the production of blood cells possibly affecting antibody production required for normal immune system activity.
    The immune system and genetic factors have both been implicated in the biological basis for autism, said Merlin G. Butler, professor of psychiatry at the KU Medical Center. Our study further supports a disturbed immune system in children with classic autism that may be related to genetic factors as cytokine proteins are coded by genes distributed among the human chromosomes.

    Furthermore, studies in families with autism have shown the significant contribution of genetics, including deletions and duplications of chromosomes and mutations or variants found in specific genes involved with brain development and function, he said.
    The importance of identifying early immunological disturbances that may contribute to autism has implications for identifying risk factors, diagnosis and possibly intervention as cytokines may play a role in the function of the developing brain," he said.
    The study was one of the largest of its type so far, analyzing the plasma of 99 children with AD between 5 and 10 years of age and that of 40 age- and gende- matched unrelated healthy siblings without AD under the same clinical assessments, specimen processing and laboratory conditions. The male-to-female ratio closely matches that seen in the ASD population, and there were gender-based differences found in five cytokines.
    The study is one of only a few to use nanoparticle technology to examine cytokine patterns from peripheral blood in ASD children that requires very small quantities of plasma for analysis and utilizes standardized kits for cytokine assay.
    This methodology should allow for other investigators to test the findings of disturbed cytokines in ASD, Butler pointed out.
    Butler said that the direction of this research is toward linking the genes encoding immune-related proteins and cytokines to ASD along with identifying the sequence of the events during critical periods of brain and neurological development. This may possibly allow for early recognition, diagnosis and potential treatment.
    Ann Manzardo, assistant professor of psychiatry, was the first author on the study.
    The study was partially supported by a grant from the Kansas Center for Autism Research and Training at the Life Span Institute of the University of Kansas and with support from the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development.

    Journal Reference:
    A.M. Manzardo, R. Henkhaus, S. Dhillon, M.G. Butler. Plasma cytokine levels in children with autistic disorder and unrelated siblings. International Journal of Developmental Neuroscience, 2012; 30 (2): 121 DOI: 10.1016/j.ijdevneu.2011.12.003"

    Best regards,
    OS.
     
    Enid likes this.
  2. Waverunner

    Waverunner Senior Member

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    Thanks for posting this. For over thirty years now, we see studies that look at certain immune markers, measure cytokines, hormones etc.. But in the end it all seems to be for nothing. We know that the immune system is dysfunctional in many diseases but what exactly is wrong and what exactly can we do about it? The problem I see is that measuring is easier than finding cures. You have nearly no regulations when doing these kind of studies where you take blood to a lab. Moreover they are a lot cheaper than drug development. Unfortunately there is nobody then who puts these findings into practical solutions. This is why I think that people with autism, CFS etc. have to suffer for many more years to come.
     
    Googsta likes this.
  3. Daffodil

    Daffodil Senior Member

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    i have come to believe very strongly that there are unidentified pathogens involved in almost every disease but they exist in such low numbers in the body, that they are almost impossible to find.

    if lipkin doesnt find a pathogen for cfs, which, in my opinion, is obviously contagious, then there are huge limitations in next generation sequencing. i agree with waverunner...we are going to have to wait a long time for any real breakthrough in the cause of autism.

    its really interestiing to read about the success dr. bradstreet is having with gcmaf and autism...all these years all those poor kids suffering with "brain fog" and not being able to tell us!
     
  4. hixxy

    hixxy Senior Member

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    I've said this before on the forums, but I had full remission for 1 1/2 weeks. I didn't just recover -- I felt better than EVER. No need to methylation sups to get my energy back up -- it was just there! All neurological problems vanished as well. Then over night collapse and was back at square one.

    I've not been able to successfully repeat this. I agree with you though Daffodil. This disease is about hidden infections -- I don't believe our immune systems are just permanently damaged. Our nervous systems on the other hand can only take so much beating.

    Unfortunately since this failed recovery, I've gone on to develop extremely severe MCS (was only mild before) and major neurological problems (damage?). I'm not as hopeful of a repeat performance anymore.

    I also don't believe we will find a universal pathogen either.
     
  5. Overstressed

    Overstressed Senior Member

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    I found this interesting because some say Autism and CFS/ME are alike, and in the light of the Norwegian findings and these antibody abnormalities, one might say there's indeed at least a problem with B-cells ?

    Is that correct to say ? Please correct me if I'm wrong.

    Best regards,
    OS.
     
  6. natasa778

    natasa778 Senior Member

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    link to full paper:
    http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0736574811001912


    I agree with Waverunner - however 'interesting' these findings are (it has been known for decades now that the immune system is dysfunctional in autism...) all this research is really a pointless waste of money unless it is translated into treatments very soon...
     
  7. hixxy

    hixxy Senior Member

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    Sigh. You also have to remember Natasha, that even once they find the problem and devise a "treatment" or drug for it. If allopathic medicine has their way we'll have to wait through another 10 years worth of clinical trials, then approval, then doctor education ....... How depressing.
     
  8. currer

    currer Senior Member

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    But these immune abnormalities, if prior to the development of AD could explain why some children respond to vaccination by developing AD
     
  9. natasa778

    natasa778 Senior Member

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    Absolutely. Imo it also explains why some mildly affected children turn much more severe following vaccinations or infections - adding insult to injury and such.


    Another 'interesting' phenomena often observed in some kids with autism is disappearance of many symptoms during fever. You hear parent saying that the higher the fever the more typical their child is, for some those are the only times they are able to hold conversation, interact etc.
     
  10. Waverunner

    Waverunner Senior Member

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    Just anecdotal but this is true for me, too. Maybe once a year I have fever and during that time my brain fogs clears up and I feel normal. Of course I'm exhausted during that time and lots of other symptoms show up that come along with the fever but my thinking as well as my emotions normalize.
     
  11. hixxy

    hixxy Senior Member

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    Bring on the fevers! I haven't had a cold, flu or anything else that might result in a fever for over 4 years now..
     
  12. natasa778

    natasa778 Senior Member

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    could this be linked http://www.internationalcancertherapy.com/ewbh.php

    or down to fever directly affecting levels of neurotransmitters:

    http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/0306362382900568


    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16550328

    and http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17645925
     
  13. Waverunner

    Waverunner Senior Member

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    Thanks for posting this, Natasa, very interesting.
     

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