Archive for the ‘Autism’ Category

Autism Symptoms Reduced Nearly 50% Two Years After Fecal Transplant

https://scienceblog.com/507184/autism-symptoms-reduced-nearly-50-two-years-after-fecal-transplant/

Autism Symptoms Reduced Nearly 50% Two Years After Fecal Transplant

Recent research suggests our gut microbiomes affect brain communication and neurological health. Worldwide, interest is growing in the idea that changes in normal gut microbiota may be responsible for triggering various conditions. At ASU, a research team is exploring using the microbiome to treat autism symptoms.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about one in every 59 children in the U.S. is diagnosed with autism, up from one in every 150 in 2000. They report that

“about half a million people on the autism spectrum will become adults over the next decade, a swelling tide for which the country is unprepared.”

The apparent rise in autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and its stubborn resistance to treatment has spurred a legion of researchers to enter the field and explore the disability in innovative ways.

Currently, effective treatments for ASD include behavioral therapy, speech and social therapy, psychiatric medications, and dietary and nutritional approaches. However, no medical treatments have been approved to treat core symptoms of ASD such as social communication difficulties and repetitive behaviors.

One promising avenue of autism research involves the gut microbiome, which is the collection of microbes that lives in our intestines and helps us in many ways including digestion of our food, training our immune system and preventing overgrowth of harmful bacteria. Recent research suggests our gut microbiomes also affect brain communication and neurological health. Worldwide, interest is growing in the idea that changes in normal gut microbiota may be responsible for triggering a vast range of diseases.

In a new study, “Long-term benefit of Microbiota Transfer Therapy in Autism Symptoms and Gut Microbiota,” published in Scientific Reports, Arizona State University researchers Rosa Krajmalnik-Brown, Ph.D., James Adams, Ph.D, and lead author Dae-Wook Kang, Ph.D, demonstrate long-term beneficial effects for children diagnosed with ASD through a revolutionary technique known as Microbiota Transfer Therapy (MTT), a special type of fecal transplant originally pioneered by Dr. Thomas Borody, an Australian gastroenterologist.

Remarkably, improvements in gut health and autism symptoms appear to persist long after treatment.

At two years post-treatment, most of the initial improvements in gut symptoms remained. In addition, parents reported a slow steady reduction of ASD symptoms during treatment and over the next two years. A professional evaluator found a 45% reduction in core ASD symptoms (language, social interaction and behavior) at two years post-treatment compared to before treatment began.

“We are finding a very strong connection between the microbes that live in our intestines and signals that travel to the brain,” said Krajmalnik-Brown, a professor at the Biodesign Swette Center for Environmental Biotechnology at the Biodesign Institute and ASU’s School for Sustainable Engineering and the Built Environment. “Two years later, the children are doing even better, which is amazing.”

Many kids with autism have gastrointestinal problems, and some studies, including ours, have found that those children also have worse autism-related symptoms,” said Krajmalnik-Brown. “In many cases, when you are able to treat those gastrointestinal problems, their behavior improves.

Roughly 30-50% of all people with autism have chronic gastrointestinal (GI) problems, primarily constipation and/or diarrhea that can last for many years. That chronic discomfort and pain can cause irritability, decreased attention and learning, and negatively impact behavior.

An earlier study with only vancomycin (an antibiotic) had found major temporary improvements in GI and autism symptoms, but the benefits were lost a few weeks after treatment stopped despite use of over-the-counter probiotics.

So, the question at hand was what’s going on in the gut, and how does it affect both physical and behavioral symptoms of autism, and how can we develop a long-lasting treatment?

Krajmalnik-Brown, Kang and Adams have shown that by transferring healthy microbiota to individuals lacking certain gut bacteria, it is possible to “donate” a more diverse set of bacteria into the patient and improve gut health.

In Australia, Fecal Microbiota Transplantation (FMT) was initially developed by Borody. At his Centre for Digestive Diseases in Sydney, Borody has overseen more than 18,000 FMTs for various disorders since 1987. He pioneered in Australia the use of FMT for colitis and Clostridium difficile infection, and was the first to use oral FMT to treat children with ASD. Only one dose of FMT is usually enough to cure C. Difficile infections, but his patients with autism were far harder to treat. He discovered that three months of daily FMT was required to treat his autism patients, but eventually resulted in significant improvements in both GI and autism symptoms.

Based on his experience with his patients, Borody led the design of the clinical treatment used at ASU for this study. The MTT approach involves 10 weeks of treatment, including pre-treatment with vancomycin, a bowel cleanse, a stomach acid suppressant, and fecal microbiota transfer daily for seven to eight weeks.

The initial open-label study, led by Krajmalnik-Brown and Adams, and published in the journal Microbiome in 2017, concluded that “this exploratory, extended-duration treatment protocol thus appears to be a promising approach to alter the gut microbiome and improve GI and behavioral symptoms of ASD. Improvements in GI symptoms, ASD symptoms, and the microbiome all persisted for at least eight weeks after treatment ended, suggesting a long-term impact.” The present study now shows the benefits are extended beyond eight weeks to at least two years post-treatment.

The ASU team compared differences in the microbiome of children with autism compared to typically developing children. At the start of the study, children with autism were found to have lower diversity in their respective gut microbes and were depleted of certain strains of helpful bacteria, such as Bifidobacteria and Prevotella.

“Kids with autism are lacking important beneficial bacteria, and have fewer options in the bacterial menu of important functions that bacteria provide to the gut than typically developing kids,” Krajmalnik-Brown said.

FMT treatment substantially increased microbial diversity and the presence of helpful bacteria in the gut, such as Bifidobacteria and Prevotella. After two years, diversity was even higher and the presence of beneficial microbes remained.

“We originally hypothesized that our therapy would be efficient to transform the dysbiotic gut microbiome toward a healthy one. In our original paper in 2017, we reported an increase in gut diversity together with beneficial bacteria after MTT, and after two years, we observed diversity was even higher and the presence of beneficial microbes remained,” Kang said.

He added that this may be one of the reasons for success in improving the gut health, but further mechanistic studies are warranted to define specific roles of gut microbes in the context of autism.

The work done at ASU is not only about treating patients but also about learning from the treatment in order to develop better formulations and optimize dosing.

“Understanding which microbes and chemicals produced by the microbes are driving these behavioral changes is at the heart of our work,” Krajmalnik-Brown said. The team’s new publication reports that the study demonstrated that two years after treatment stopped the participants still had an average of a 58% reduction in GI symptoms compared to baseline. In addition, the parents of most participants reported “a slow but steady improvement in core ASD symptoms.”

“Every family completed the study, and every family returned two years later for a follow-up evaluation,” said Adams, citing the families’ dedication to the research. “The treatment was generally well-tolerated with minimal adverse effects.”

“This is a world-first discovery that when we treated the gut bacteria in these children during our clinical trial two years ago to reset their microbiome with FMT, positive results are still continuing to be improving two years from the original treatments. I would call it the highest improvement in a cohort that anyone has achieved for autism symptoms,” said Borody.

Professional evaluation revealed a 45% decrease in ASD symptoms compared to baseline. Researchers note that although there may be some placebo effect, much of that effect appears to be real. At the start of the study, 83% of participants were rated as “severe” autism. At the end of the study, only 17% were “severe,” 39% were “mild/moderate,” and 44% were below the cut-off for mild ASD.

Greg Caporaso, at Northern Arizona University, a leading expert in microbiome data science and a co-author on these studies, helped to analyze the microbiome data to better understand bacterial changes as a result of MTT.

“Drs. Krajmalnik-Brown, Kang and I are excited about the results, but we want to caution the public that we need larger clinical trials for this to become an FDA-approved treatment,” said Adams. Professional expertise is required for safe and effective treatment.

MTT improves GI distress by introducing key strains of beneficial bacteria and helping to raise levels of biodiversity within the gut, boosting health overall.

Adams has both professional and personal reasons for doggedly pursuing ways to help children with autism because he knows the situation first-hand. His daughter was diagnosed with autism just before her third birthday. Adams, a President’s Professor at ASU’s School for Engineering of Matter, Transport and Energy, and the chair of Materials Sciences, is also president of the Autism Society of Greater Phoenix, the largest parent support group in Arizona.

“Dr. James Adams is the reason why I started working on autism,” Krajmalnik-Brown said. “I had the methods to do all of the measurements and assessments in the microbiome part of the work, and he had the autism knowledge.”

Adams recruited patients, supervised clinical work and ASD assessments, and guided the patients through the trials, and Krajmalnik-Brown led the microbiome evaluations and helped plan the study.

All of the participants in the study exhibited chronic GI symptoms from infancy, including chronic constipation and/or chronic diarrhea. The treatment benefits extended beyond their physical symptoms, even causing some parents to note how much their children’s behavior had improved over time.

“It is very unusual to see steady gradual improvement after the conclusion of any treatment,” said Adams. “We only conducted the long-term follow-up study after several families told us that their child was continuing to improve significantly.”

Krajmalnik-Brown stated that the data suggests that the MTT intervention transformed the gut environment into a healthier status, leading to long-term benefit on both GI and ASD symptoms.

Adams said many of the participants in the trial shared common traits, including

  • birth by C-section
  • reduced breastfeeding
  • increased antibiotics
  • low fiber intake by the mother and child

All of these lead to limited biodiversity in their gut bacteria. Due to the open label nature of the study and the small sample size used, more research is needed in order to verify the usefulness of MTT as a therapeutic.

The initial study involved a “first-generation” estimate as to optimal dose and duration of treatment, and it was enough for 90% of the children to have substantial benefit. The team is now working on optimizing the dosing and duration to try to improve benefits even more, and to determine if booster doses may be needed in some cases.

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For more:  https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2017/12/11/bitter-pill-to-swallow-for-c-diff/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2019/02/19/germs-in-your-gut-are-talking-to-your-brain-scientists-want-to-know-what-theyre-saying/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2019/01/12/sibo-clinical-implications-natural-therapeutic-options/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2019/03/29/cochrane-review-probiotics-reduce-c-diff-by-70-in-high-risk-patients-taking-antibiotics/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2018/09/15/prebiotics-probiotics-do-they-really-work-for-gut-health/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2019/01/18/investigational-c-diff-treatment-granted-fast-track-designation/

AutismOne 2019 Chicago Conference in May – Dr. Brown Speaking

conf-2019

Register here:  https://autismone.ticketspice.com/autism-one-2019-conference

The most rewarding educational and networking experience you can have at any autism conference!  An exceptional value as you gather new hope, answers, help, and direction.

New to the autism diagnosis? Come hear the “Newly Diagnosed” track just for you!
Yearning to learn more? Hear the “Biomedical Research and Treatments” track!

This conference will help you answer and understand important concepts:

  • Recovery from autism is possible and children get better!
  • There are medical comorbidities of autism that, when treated, allow the child to enjoy improved learning and behavior.

On the autism journey a little while? Come hear the latest research and healing information!
Medical professional? Hear renowned researchers present the latest cutting-edge autism research.

Conference track highlights include:
  • Membrane Medicine track
  • PANDAS/PANS track (pediatric autoimmune neuropsychiatric disorders associated with streptococcal infections and pediatric acute-onset neuropsychiatric syndrome)
  • 4th Annual International HPV Vaccine Education Symposium
  • Focus for Health Advocacy Training track
  • Chiropractic Pediatric Continuing Education Credit Program with Emphasis on Autism
  • Endocannabinoid Medicine track
  • ADHD (attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder) track
  • Culinary Day: Culinary Day on a Budget
  • And a special surprise panel that illuminates the bigger picture that affects your family’s world

The AutismOne 2019 Conference will be held May 22-26, 2019, at the Loews Chicago O’Hare Hotel in Rosemont, IL.

“AutismOne always has the cutting-edge information years ahead of any other autism conference. You hear it first at AutismOne.” ~Janet Cakir, PhD

CONFERENCE SCHEDULE-AT-A-GLANCE

WEDNESDAY, MAY 22, LECTURES:
1:30PM-6:00PM

THURSDAY, MAY 23, LECTURES, MOVIES, PANELS:
8:30AM-10:15PM

FRIDAY, MAY 24, LECTURES AND PANELS:
8:30AM-5:45PM

SATURDAY, MAY 25, LECTURES AND PANELS:
8:30AM-7:00PM

SUNDAY, MAY 26, LECTURES:
8:45AM-1:30PM

See list of speakers:  https://autismoneconference.com/conference_speakers.html  Erica Linn, MSN & Dr. Greg Brown MD from Serenity Health in Wisconsin will be speakers at the conference.  Dr. Brown treats children and adults with Lyme/MSIDS as well as PANS/PANDAS.  He’s stated that up to 80% of his autistic and PANS/PANDAS patients are infected with Lyme/MSIDS.

For more on that connection:  https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2017/10/01/panspandas-steroids-autoimmune-disease-lymemsids-the-need-for-medical-collaboration/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2017/10/08/misdiagnosed-how-children-with-treatable-medical-issues-are-mistakenly-labeled-as-mentally-ill/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2017/06/30/child-with-lymemsidspans-told-by-doctors-she-made-it-all-up/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2017/10/09/today-is-panspandas-awareness-day/  Trifiletti officially diagnosed Carson with PANS, not PANDAS, due to the active co-infections found in his blood work: mycoplasma, the bacteria that causes pneumonia; coxsackie — the virus causing Hand, Foot and Mouth disease; streptococcus, the bacteria causing strep throat; bartonella and babesia — a bacteria and parasite related to Lyme disease; and yeast, Melissa Spears said.

Instead of attacking these infections, Carson’s antibodies were instead going after his brain.

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2018/03/14/dr-frid-children-lyme/

Autism & Parenting: Helpful Caregiving Tips Podcast

http://brainwarriorswaypodcast.com/autism-parenting-helpful-caregiving-tips/

Click on link for podcast.

DR. DANIEL G. AMEN, MD on The Brain Warrior's Way Podcast

DANIEL G. AMEN, MD

Dr. Amen is a NY Times best-selling author, double board-certified psychiatrist and brain-imaging pioneer. He is watched by millions of viewers on his breakthrough public television programs about brain health. His research was listed as one of the top 100 stories in science in 2015 by Discover Magazine.

TANA AMEN, BSN RN on The Brain Warrior's Way Podcast

TANA AMEN, BSN, RN

Tana is VP of Amen Clinics, a highly-respected health and fitness expert, nurse and author of six books, including the NY Times bestseller The Omni Diet. Tana’s fresh approach and energetic presence have made her a nationally renowned speaker. As an in-demand media guest, she has appeared on TV shows including, The Doctors, The Today Show and Good Day New York.

 

The experience of parenting a child with a disability such as autism or cerebral palsy is vastly different than the usual parenting experience. There’s often grief, guilt, and shame, and even feelings of underperforming or letting your child down. In the second episode of a series on caregiving, Dr. Daniel Amen and Tana Amen give you tips to change your way of thinking to enable you to help guide and care for your child in a more productive way.

 

Prevalence of Autism Study Comparing Vaccination Schedules in a Pediatric Patient Population

 Approx. 2 Min

New comparative Autism Rate Data Study

Published March 14, 2019

Dr. Paul Thomas commissioned an independent quality assurance project.  The researcher found 3,345 patients born into Thomas’ practice in the last 10.5 years.

  • 715 in his practice had ZERO vaccines. Autism rate 1 in 715.
  • Remaining 2,630 followed his “vaccine friendly” schedule getting between 7-18 vaccines. There were 6 cases making the Autism rate 1 in 440.
  • The recommended CDC schedule mandates kids of this age group get 25-40 vaccines with an Autism rate of 1 in 45.
The “vaccine friendly” plan gave 1,000% improvement from the CDC vaccine schedule.

Speaking of “real life” data, in the first ever patient sample in Lyme, Connecticut, only a quarter of the patients had the EM rash, yet the CDC tells us it’s between 70-80%: https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2019/02/22/why-mainstream-lyme-msids-research-remains-in-the-dark-ages/

Hmmmmm…..

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Germs in Your Gut Are Talking to Your Brain. Scientists Want to Know What They’re Saying.

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/01/28/health/microbiome-brain-behavior-dementia.html?smid=fb-nytimes&smtyp=cur

The body’s microbial community may influence the brain and behavior, perhaps even playing a role in dementia, autism and other disorders.

Credit Sean McSorley

In 2014 John Cryan, a professor at University College Cork in Ireland, attended a meeting in California about Alzheimer’s disease. He wasn’t an expert on dementia. Instead, he studied the microbiome, the trillions of microbes inside the healthy human body.

Dr. Cryan and other scientists were beginning to find hints that these microbes could influence the brain and behavior. Perhaps, he told the scientific gathering, the microbiome has a role in the development of Alzheimer’s disease.

The idea was not well received.

“I’ve never given a talk to so many people who didn’t believe what I was saying,” Dr. Cryan recalled.

A lot has changed since then: Research continues to turn up remarkable links between the microbiome and the brain. Scientists are finding evidence that microbiome may play a role not just in Alzheimer’s disease, but Parkinson’s disease, depression, schizophrenia, autism and other conditions.

For some neuroscientists, new studies have changed the way they think about the brain.

One of the skeptics at that Alzheimer’s meeting was Sangram Sisodia, a neurobiologist at the University of Chicago. He wasn’t swayed by Dr. Cryan’s talk, but later he decided to put the idea to a simple test.

“It was just on a lark,” said Dr. Sisodia. “We had no idea how it would turn out.”

He and his colleagues gave antibiotics to mice prone to develop a version of Alzheimer’s disease, in order to kill off much of the gut bacteria in the mice. Later, when the scientists inspected the animals’ brains, they found far fewer of the protein clumps linked to dementia.

Just a little disruption of the microbiome was enough to produce this effect. Young mice given antibiotics for a week had fewer clumps in their brains when they grew old, too.

“I never imagined it would be such a striking result,” Dr. Sisodia said. “For someone with a background in molecular biology and neuroscience, this is like going into outer space.”

Following a string of similar experiments, he now suspects that just a few species in the gut — perhaps even one — influence the course of Alzheimer’s disease, perhaps by releasing chemical that alters how immune cells work in the brain.

He hasn’t found those microbes, let alone that chemical. But “there’s something’s in there,” he said. “And we have to figure out what it is.”

Scientists have long known that microbes live inside us. In 1683, the Dutch scientist Antonie van Leeuwenhoek put plaque from his teeth under a microscope and discovered tiny creatures swimming about.

But the microbiome has stubbornly resisted scientific discovery. For generations, microbiologists only studied the species that they could grow in the lab. Most of our interior occupants can’t survive in petri dishes.

In the early 2000s, however, the science of the microbiome took a sudden leap forward when researchers figured out how to sequence DNA from these microbes. Researchers initially used this new technology to examine how the microbiome influences parts of our bodies rife with bacteria, such as the gut and the skin.

Few of them gave much thought to the brain — there didn’t seem to be much point. The brain is shielded from microbial invasion by the so-called blood-brain barrier. Normally, only small molecules pass through.

“As recently as 2011, it was considered crazy to look for associations between the microbiome and behavior,” said Rob Knight, a microbiologist at the University of California, San Diego.

He and his colleagues discovered some of the earliest hints of these links. Investigators took stool from mice with a genetic mutation that caused them to eat a lot and put on weight. They transferred the stool to mice that had been raised germ-free — that is, entirely without gut microbiomes — since birth.

After receiving this so-called fecal transplant, the germ-free mice got hungry, too, and put on weight.

Altering appetite isn’t the only thing that the microbiome can do to the brain, it turns out. Dr. Cryan and his colleagues, for example, have found that mice without microbiomes become loners, preferring to stay away from fellow rodents.

The scientists eventually discovered changes in the brains of these antisocial mice. One region, called the amygdala, is important for processing social emotions. In germ-free mice, the neurons in the amygdala make unusual sets of proteins, changing the connections they make with other cells.

Studies of humans revealed some surprising patterns, too. Children with autism have unusual patterns of microbial species in their stool. Differences in the gut bacteria of people with a host of other brain-based conditions also have been reported.

But none of these associations proves cause and effect. Finding an unusual microbiome in people with Alzheimer’s doesn’t mean that the bacteria drive the disease. It could be the reverse: People with Alzheimer’s disease often change their eating habits, for example, and that switch might favor different species of gut microbes.

Fecal transplants can help pin down these links. In his research on Alzheimer’s, Dr. Sisodia and his colleagues transferred stool from ordinary mice into the mice they had treated with antibiotics. Once their microbiomes were restored, the antibiotic-treated mice started developing protein clumps again.

“We’re extremely confident that it’s the bacteria that’s driving this,” he said.

Other researchers have taken these experiments a step further by using human fecal transplants.

If you hold a mouse by its tail, it normally wriggles in an effort to escape. If you give it a fecal transplant from humans with major depression, you get a completely different result: The mice give up sooner, simply hanging motionless.

As intriguing as this sort of research can be, it has a major limitation. Because researchers are transferring hundreds of bacterial species at once, the experiments can’t reveal which in particular are responsible for changing the brain.

Now researchers are pinpointing individual strains that seem to have an effect.

To study autism, Dr. Mauro Costa-Mattioli and his colleagues at the Baylor College of Medicine in Houston investigated different kinds of mice, each of which display some symptoms of autism. A mutation in a gene called SHANK3 can cause mice to groom themselves repetitively and avoid contact with other mice, for example.

In another mouse strain, Dr. Costa-Mattioli found that feeding mothers a high-fat diet makes it more likely their pups will behave this way.

When the researchers investigated the microbiomes of these mice, they found the animals lacked a common species called Lactobacillus reuteri. When they added a strain of that bacteria to the diet, the animals became social again.

Dr. Costa-Mattioli found evidence that L. reuteri releases compounds that send a signal to nerve endings in the intestines. The vagus nerve sends these signals from the gut to the brain, where they alter production of a hormone called oxytocin that promotes social bonds.

Other microbial species also send signals along the vagus nerve, it turns out. Still others communicate with the brain via the bloodstream.

It’s likely that this influence begins before birth, as a pregnant mother’s microbiome releases molecules that make their way into the fetal brain.

Mothers seed their babies with microbes during childbirth and breast feeding. During the first few years of life, both the brain and the microbiome rapidly mature.

To understand the microbiome’s influence on the developing brain, Rebecca Knickmeyer, a neuroscientist at Michigan State University, is studying fMRI scans of infants.

In her first study, published in January, she focused on the amygdala, the emotion-processing region of the brain that Dr. Cryan and others have found to be altered in germ-free mice.

Dr. Knickmeyer and her colleagues measured the strength of the connections between the amygdala and other regions of the brain. Babies with a lower diversity of species in their guts have stronger connections, the researchers found.

Does that mean a low-diversity microbiome makes babies more fearful of others? It’s not possible to say yet — but Dr. Knickmeyer hopes to find out by running more studies on babies.

Credit Sean McSorley

As researchers better understand how the microbiome influences the brain, they hope doctors will be able to use it to treat psychiatric and neurological conditions.

It’s possible they’ve been doing it for a long time — without knowing.

In the early 1900s, neurologists found that putting people with epilepsy on a diet low in carbohydrates and high in protein and fat sometimes reduced their seizures.

Epileptic mice experience the same protection from a so-called ketogenic diet. But no one could say why. Elaine Hsiao, a microbiologist at the University of California, Los Angeles, suspected that the microbiome was the reason.

To test the microbiome’s importance, Dr. Hsiao and her colleagues raised mice free of microbes. When they put the germ-free epileptic mice on a ketogenic diet, they found that the animals got no protection from seizures.

But if they gave the germ-free animals stool from mice on a ketogenic diet, seizures were reduced.

Dr. Hsiao found that two types of gut bacteria in particular thrive in mice on a ketogenic diet. They may provide their hosts with building blocks for neurotransmitters that put a brake on electrical activity in the brain.

It’s conceivable that people with epilepsy wouldn’t need to go on a ketogenic diet to get its benefits — one day, they may just take a pill containing the bacteria that do well on the diet.

Sarkis Mazmanian, a microbiologist at Caltech, and his colleagues have identified a single strain of bacteria that triggers symptoms of Parkinson’s disease in mice. He has started a company that is testing a compound that may block signals that the microbe sends to the vagus nerve.

Dr. Mazmanian and other researchers now must manage a tricky balancing act. On one hand, their experiments have proven remarkably encouraging; on the other, scientists don’t want to encourage the notion that microbiome-based cures for diseases like Parkinson’s are around the corner.

That’s not easy when people can buy probiotics without a prescription, and when some companies are willing to use preliminary research to peddle microbes to treat conditions like depression.

“The science can get mixed up with what the pseudoscientists are doing,” said Dr. Hsiao.

Dr. Costa-Mattioli hopes that L. reuteri some day will help some people with autism, but he warns parents against treating their children with store-bought probiotics. Some strains of L. reuteri alter the behavior of mice, he’s found, and others don’t.

Dr. Costa-Mattioli and his colleagues are still searching for the most effective strain and figuring out the right dose to try on people.

“You want to go into a clinical trial with the best weapon, and I’m not sure we have it,” he said.

Katarzyna B. Hooks, a computational biologist at the University of Bordeaux in France, warned that studies like Dr. Costa-Mattioli’s are still unusual. Most of these findings come from research with fecal transplants or germ-free mice — experiments in which it’s especially hard to pinpoint the causes of changes in behavior.

“We have the edges of the puzzle, and we’re now trying to figure out what’s in the picture itself,” she said.

 

 

 

 

 

Mother’s Appeal After Boy Diagnosed With Autism When He Just Needed Antibiotics

https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-scotland-edinburgh-east-fife-46989099

Mother’s appeal after boy diagnosed with autism when he just needed antibiotics

25 January 2019

‘Overnight, something went very wrong’

https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-scotland-edinburgh-east-fife-46989099  (News Video in Link)

A mother is calling for greater awareness of a little-known condition she believes changed her easy-going son overnight.

Alison Maclaine fears some children are being misdiagnosed with autism and mental health issues when they are really suffering an infection which can be treated simply with antibiotics.

Her eight-year-old son Jack suffered distressing personality changes and “lost a year of his life”.

And she said she was left “in despair” that she and her family had “no quality of life”.

Now Alison believes he was suffering from Paediatric Acute-onset Neuropsychiatric Syndrome (PANDAS), triggered by a streptococcal infection – a condition that can be treated with simple antibiotics and anti-inflammatories.

Something wrong

Jack went to bed one Friday in January last year, looking forward to a football tournament he was playing in the next day.

But on arrival at the venue on Saturday morning he became overwhelmed with anxiety. After several attempts, he was unable to enter the building.

At home in Dumfries, Alison realised something was very wrong.

She told the BBC: “He started to repeatedly apologise. He said he didn’t deserve to have fun, didn’t deserve to have friends, didn’t deserve to have nice things, didn’t deserve to play football.

Alison Maclaine
Alison Maclaine knew her son’s diagnosis was not right and did her own research into his symptoms

“That eventually led to ‘I don’t deserve to live, when I get home I am just going to sit outside until I freeze to death’.”

When it came to bedtime, Jack refused to have covers and pillows and started to repeat that he needed to die, until he fell asleep.

The following day saw his behaviour sink further.

Alison said: “One of the worst things in the world must be listening to your child telling you he wanted to die and asking you to help him.”


What is PANS/PANDAS?

According to the charity PANS PANDAS UK, PANS (Paediatric Acute-onset Neuropsychiatric Syndrome) is a neuropsychiatric condition which is triggered by a misdirected immune response which results in an inflammation of a child’s brain.

PANDAS is a subset of PANS, triggered by a misdirected immune response to a streptococcal infection which results in an inflammation of a child’s brain.

Happening very quickly, this can cause a child to exhibit symptoms including anxiety, aggressive behaviour, depression, clumsiness, insomnia and the onset of obsessive-compulsive disorder.

It was first recognised in the United States in 1998 where PANS PANDAS charities estimate as many as one in 200 children could be affected.

In 2018, the World Health Organisation recognised the condition, but in the UK it is not widely known.

There is no clear test for the condition so doctors often have to rule out psychiatric conditions. The immediate response to antibiotic or anti-inflammatory treatment is often what confirms the condition.

The charity PANS PANDAS UK said a failure to understand the condition in the UK means that children are regularly wrongly referred to Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS).


‘Absolute despair’

Jack then became aggressive and withdrew from his beloved younger sister Cara. He would become irritable and angry and started to regress, playing with baby toys.

Over the next several months he was repeatedly diagnosed as having autism and severe anxiety.

But Alison, herself a psychiatrist, disagreed.

She said: “It got to the point where I really felt absolute despair.

“I felt that he had no quality of life, we had no quality of life. There were times when I contemplated things.”

Jack Maclaine
His family feels that Jack is “back”

That despair led to Alison doing her own research and the discovery of PANS and PANDAS.

Alison said reading the symptoms was like reading a description of her son and his behavioural changes.

Jack was finally diagnosed privately by a consultant paediatrician in England and treated with simple antibiotics.

They worked overnight and Alison had her son back.

She said: “Jack responded dramatically to the treatment. He hadn’t left the street in five months except for school. After two days on antibiotics he wanted to come to Morrisons with me and Cara. It felt like Jack was back.”

Dr Tim Ubhi

Dr. Tim Ubhi finally diagnosed PANDAS in Jack

 

Alison is frustrated now, believing if Jack had been given got antibiotics when he first presented to the GP in January, the outcome would have been different.

She said: “It is so frustrating knowing the treatment was so simple. Now I hate to think there are other children in the situation that they have this disorder that has not been picked up on and have been sent down a mental health/psychological route which can’t fix the problem.”

Dr Tim Ubhi, who diagnosed Jack’s condition, said: “The problem here is if we do not recognise this condition and we ignore it, potentially there are children out there who are suffering who could actually get treated and actually improve their symptoms.

“So we have a responsibility as physicians to think about this as a condition and do the work to actually create an awareness of what the condition is doing in the UK.”

A Scottish government spokeswoman said: “We appreciate that watching any loved one suffer is heartbreaking, even more so when it is a child.

“We are working together with partners to improve the outcomes and support for adults and children with rare conditions, and ensure that everyone receives the appropriate treatment.

“Ministers are unable to make or influence clinical decisions or definitions, and it would not be appropriate for them to do so.”

If you, or someone you know, have been affected by mental health issues, these organisations may be able to help.

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**Comment**

These stories are repeated over and over worldwide.  Time for doctors to get on board and learn about it so they can recognize and treat this.

Please take note of the plethora of symptoms and the tandem workings of PANDAS/PANS with Lyme/MSIDS. A highly respected LLMD here in Wisconsin has found that 80% of his PANS kids also have Lyme/MSIDS (borrelia and other coinfections).  

For more:  https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2018/07/28/stories-of-pandas/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2018/01/05/scary-side-of-childhood-strep/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2019/01/27/pans-pandas-autoimmune-encephalitis-rickert-hong/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2017/06/30/child-with-lymemsidspans-told-by-doctors-she-made-it-all-up/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2018/12/17/my-kid-is-not-crazy-study-shows-1-3-kids-with-pans-have-hallucinations/

Vaccines can also be triggers:  https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2017/09/21/aluminum-flawed-assumptions-fueling-autoimmune-disease-and-lyme/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2017/12/02/scottish-doctor-gives-insight-on-lyme-msids/  He has also successfully treated a number of young women who fell ill after their HPV vaccination, which seems to have stimulated a latent Lyme infection to reactivate.

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2016/04/24/gardasil-and-bartonella/  Asymptomatic girls after receiving Gardasil activated dormant Bartonella which was confirmed by testing.

 

 

Exposure to Heavy Metals Linked to Autism in Children….and Vaccines Still Contain Mercury

https://www.naturalnews.com/2019-01-21-exposure-to-heavy-metals-linked-to-autism-in-children.html

Exposure to heavy metals linked to autism in children… and vaccines still contain mercury

Image: Exposure to heavy metals linked to autism in children… and vaccines still contain mercury

(Natural News) Children with autism spectrum disorder exhibited higher levels of several toxic heavy metals — such as lead, thallium and tin as well as mercury and cadmium — compared with their healthier peers, according to a study published in the journal Biological Trace Element Research. As part of the study, a team of researchers at the Arizona State University compared blood and urine samples of 55 children with autism aged five to 16 years against 44 healthy children of the same age and gender.

The research team found that children with autism had 41 percent higher blood lead levels and 74 percent higher urinary lead levels compared with their healthier peers. The experts also found that the autism group had 77 percent higher thallium levels and 44 percent higher tungsten levels than those in the control group. In addition, children with autism had a 115 percent higher levels of tin compared with the controls. Lead, thallium, tin, and tungsten were previously found to impair brain development and function, and may also impede the normal functioning of other organs and systems in the body, said study leader James Adams.

In addition, the researchers conducted a statistical analysis to determine whether the levels of toxic metals coincide with the severity of autism in children. The research team used three various autism severity scales in the analysis. The experts found that 38 to 47 percent of the variation in disease severity were correlated to the levels of toxic metals present. The research team also noted that heavy metals such as mercury and cadmium were strongly associated with autism severity.

“We hypothesize that reducing early exposure to toxic metals may help ameliorate symptoms of autism, and treatment to remove toxic metals may reduce symptoms of autism; these hypotheses need further exploration, as there is a growing body of research to support it,” said the researchers in Science Daily.

The nonprofit organizations Autism Research Institute and the Legacy Foundation funded the study.

Mercury exposure through vaccination may trigger autism onset

The recent findings add to the mounting evidence linking heavy metals and autism in children. An analysis conducted by the the University of Northern Iowa revealed that 43 out of 58 scientific reports demonstrated a potential connection between heavy metals and the onset of autism in children. The research team also noted several statistical errors in the studies, and conducted a re-analysis to rule out the discrepancies. The re-analysis showed that children with autism indeed had higher levels of heavy metals in their body.

In another study, infant macaque monkeys that received vaccines similar to the 1990s pediatric vaccine schedule showed amygdala dysfunction compared to the un-vaccinated monkeys. Previous studies have found a link between amygdala dysfunction and autism onset. The results of both studies were published in the journal Acta Neurobiologiae Experimentalis.

“The rapid increase in autism cannot be explained solely by changes in diagnostic practices and awareness. We must look at what babies and pregnant women are being exposed to that has created this epidemic and take immediate steps to protect our children from these hazardous substances…While we wait for the government to act, the public can take steps to limit their exposures to toxicants which can alter fetal and infant development leading to developmental disabilities like autism. The public can refuse vaccines made with mercury, can make choices for their child’s vaccine schedule, and can create homes that are largely mercury-free,” said Sallie Bernard, president of the nonprofit SafeMinds.

Two studies published in the journal Metabolic Brain Disease confirmed that mercury was associated with autism severity. To carry out the research, health experts examined 100 children and found that those with autism had significantly higher levels of mercury compared with their siblings and their healthier peers. The research team also found that children with the highest mercury levels displayed the most severe symptoms of autism.

Sources include: 

ScienceDaily.com

UPI.com

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For more:  https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2019/01/07/the-vaccine-debate-top-government-expert-states-vaccines-can-cause-autism-in-some-children/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2016/12/08/mercury-and-autism/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2018/09/28/toxic-metal-pollution-linked-with-development-of-autism-spectrum-disorder/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2018/10/22/aluminium-in-brain-tissue-in-autism/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2017/09/21/aluminum-flawed-assumptions-fueling-autoimmune-disease-and-lyme/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2017/03/30/ty-bollinger-the-truth-about-vaccines-series/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2017/10/26/clinical-trial-shows-most-kids-with-autism-are-not-born-with-it/