In an effort to uncover the cause of autism, researchers at the University of California-Davis Mind Institute never gave up contention that many cases are the result of an immune disorder. They released their findings in July 2013 via the Brain & Behavior Research Foundation and in Translational Psychiatry" stating approximately 25 percent of autism cases may be linked to specific maternal antibodies that cross the placenta during pregnancy, attacking fetal protein brain development with 99 percent predictability. Researchers identified seven target protein or antigen sites that the mother's auto-antibodies bind. They include cypin, lactase dehydrogenase A & B, STIP1, CRMP1, CRMP2, and Y-box-binding protein. The effect of the mother's auto-antibodies and these antigen sites may create a biomarker of cellular death. Cypin, for example, is one protein that is important in linking neuron cells in the hippocampus, the learning and memory center of the brain, to connect with other neuron cells.
Furthermore, the research group revealed that auto-antibodies injected into eight pregnant female rhesus monkeys created autism like symptoms within the first two years of the young monkey's lives. Although this is encouraging research which explains the cause of a significant number of autism cases, further testing is needed prior to developing a human diagnostic test in females to identify the autism inducing auto-antibodies. The lead researcher in this study holds the auto-antibody patent and is a consultant for Pediatric Bioscience, the company that licensed the technology for development of a diagnostic test within 18 months to detect auto-antibodies in females. This research also encourages development of new therapies to block specific auto-antibody targets which may lower the incidence of autism at birth due to maternal auto-antibodies at the time of conception.
Recent studies indicate approximately 30 percent of all autism cases have a co-occurrence of ADHD symptoms, this new research should also explain ADHD causation. As a pharmacist with over 25 years specializing in ADHD stimulant and psychiatric medications, there is a pharmacological link between Autism Spectrum Disorder and ADHD. Drug therapy used to alleviate, not cure, autism and ADHD symptoms in many cases are similar. The research findings from the University of California-Davis Mind Institute is groundbreaking, however the important question is" why are pregnant women producing antibodies that turn rogue and attack fetal proteins critical in neuronal development? Is there an environmental, nutritional or neurophysiological explanation that is genetically encoding a mother's immunity to become toxic to her unborn child? Why is autism and ADHD a mysterious epidemic only in America?
Eliminating nutritional and environmental risk factors are critical when considering pregnancy. An expecting mother requires a whole foods diet free from toxins. Toxins are more abundant in today's food supply, including Genetically Modified Organism (GMO) crops which proliferate the American landscape. GMO crops contain bacterial genes which allow survival after herbicide spraying. The bacterial genes also produce Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt), an insect poison. If GMO insect poisons, along with other environmental toxins accumulate in the expectant mother's blood, then an auto-immune response by the fetus may explain why pregnant women develop harmful auto-antibodies causing autism. Until further research validates GMO foods safe for human consumption, expectant mothers should refrain from GMO foods. The Institute for Responsible Technology recommends foods from the Non-GMO Shopping Guide. Additionally, the Coalition Against Overmedicating Our Youth (CAOOY) recommends enzymatic nutritional supplementation which can be found at CAOOY.org to support a healthy body and focused mind.Learn how to help children with behavioral challenges develop a healthy body and focused mind by eliminating nutritional, physiological and environmental risk factors prior to premature drug therapy and prevent our society from Over Medicating Our Youth.