Archive for the ‘Mitochondrial Disease/Disorder’ Category

The newest thing in autism?

Thursday, August 11th, 2011

Recently it has come out that a subset of ASD kids have issues with recently discovered  folate autoantibodies of the blocking and binding types. In spite of all the big words the prior sentence has, this actually opens up a new way of testing and treatment for those children that are in that subset. In plain English, the body  is attacking itself by targeting the folate receptors. As anyone who has taken a high school health courses knows, antibodies are designed to fight the foreign invaders (bacteria, virus, or anything not considered part of the body) and utterly destroy them so the body can remain pure and healthy. But somehow, the body has been tricked into fighting itself and destroying the ability of folate to bind and be transported through the nervous system leading to a neurological impairment.

For the past several months, our clinic has been having children the doctor has suspected of having this issue tested for these antibodies and the findings have been surprising  to say the least.  Over half of the children tested are coming up positive!  This has opened up a new line of treatment for these kids in that high doses of folinic acid have produced clinical benefit.

In spite of the fact that another issue with ASD has been identified and treatments exist for this problem, the real questions are…. Why is the body attacking itself? What triggered an autoimmune reaction? Is  molecular mimicry to blame and if so, what started the initial assault? Was it something in the environment? Inquiring minds want to know.

Folate Receptor Alpha Defect Causes Cerebral Folate Transport Deficiency: A Treatable Neurodegenerative Disorder Associated with Disturbed Myelin Metabolism

Folate receptor autoimmunity and cerebral folate deficiency in low-functioning autism with neurological deficits

Mitochondrial Diseases Associated With Cerebral Folate Deficiency