Autism spectrum disorders linked to mast cell activation

Autism spectrum disorders linked to mast cell activation
A review of the latest autism spectrum disorder (ASD) research by National Institutes of Health funded mast cell researcher and head of molecular immunopharmacology and drug discovery at Tufts, Dr. Theoharis Theoharides*, shows that mast cell activation may be the root cause of ASD in some children. Other recent studies have found a link between autism and maternal and childhood food allergies, asthma and eczema, all of which involve mast cells  (and histamine). Autism is believed to affect as many as one in 45 children in the United States, but the lack of reliable  biomarkers has made the development of treatments difficult. The annual cost of autism was recently estimated at over $250 billion in 2015.
*Dr. Theoharides is in the top five percent most quoted authors in scientific papers.
His review, published recently in the journal Translational Psychiatry, points out that mast cells are located in all tissues, including the thalamus and hypothalamus, which regulate emotions.
On a personal note not relating to the specifics of ASD behaviour but rather the regulation of emotions by mast cells generally, I have experienced what some have dubbed “masto-rage” or “mast cell rage”, and can I can tell you first hand that mast cell activation messes with your ability to think straight, interact with people you love in a rational way, and can cause violent (and often illogical) outbursts.
Again – I am not saying this is ASD behaviour, it’s just an explanation of my personal experiences of mast cell activated hypothalamic and thalamic processes.
Dr. Theoharides’ findings show that the expression of inflammatory molecules interleukin (IL-1B, IL-6, IL-17) and tutor necrosis factor (TNF) is increased in the brain, spinal fluid and blood of some autism patients, while others are released in times of stress. Some with elevated IL-6 and TNF may benefit from treatment with the bioflavonoid luteolin (which is something I take daily) which is a supplement that prevents mast cells from releasing histamine and other inflammation  (like interleukins) from being released into the blood stream.
A study published in the journal Cellular Molecular Biology points out that histamine causes consistent blood-brain  barrier “opening”/permeability.  Didn’t know histamine is found in  the brain? It’s found there, and we have histamine receptors in the heart, breasts, and pretty much everywhere else. That’s why it’s important if we lack the DAO and HNMT histamine degrading enzymes (which can be a genetic issue), or if we have activated mast cells  (histamine is found in these immune system cells), then we might benefit eat an overall anti-inflammatory and low histamine or histamine-balanced diet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.