Navigation Links
Children with autism more likely to have mitochondrial defects impacting cellular energy production
Date:11/30/2010

NEW YORK, N.Y. (December 1, 2010) A new study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) and partially funded by Autism Speaks, found that children with autism have more trouble fueling the energy demands of their cells due to dysfunctional mitochondria. These new findings from UC Davis reveal several different types of mitochondrial dysfunction and suggest a novel way of screening for these deficits using blood samples.

Mitochondria, the "powerhouses" of cells, provide energy for cell functions through a cascade of enzyme complexes. Together, those enzyme complexes create energy through a process called oxidative phosphorylation. Previous studies have shown that mitochondrial dysfunction can lead to a host of disorders particularly affecting brain cells which are characterized by high energy demands. Although mitochondrial dysfunction has previously been suspected in some individuals with autism spectrum disorders, the evaluation was difficult, and typically required a sample from muscle cells.

For the study, blood samples were taken from ten children with autism and ten unrelated typically developing children, all aged 2-5 years. The researchers analyzed mitochondria in children's white blood cells. Mitochondria in the samples from children with autism were less efficient at creating energy through oxidative phosphorylation. In some, there was a genetic mutation that affected mitochondrial function. In others, the researchers observed that one or more enzyme complexes were dysfunctional. In most of the children with autism, there were many extra copies of mitochondria, which may partially compensate for each one not working optimally.

"It is remarkable that evidence of mitochondrial dysfunction and changes in mitochondrial DNA were detected in the blood of these young children with autism," said Geraldine Dawson, Ph.D., Autism Speaks chief science officer. "We look forward to seeing other groups replicate these findings. We need to understand why these differences exist. One of the challenges has been that it has been difficult to diagnose mitochondrial dysfunction because it usually requires a muscle biopsy. If we could screen for these metabolic problems with a blood test it would be a big step forward."

Cecilia Giulivi, the study's lead author, is a biochemist in the Department of Molecular Biosciences in the School of Veterinary Medicine at UC Davis and is a recipient of an Autism Speaks Pilot Award. Isaac Pessah, director of the Center for Children's Environmental Health and Disease Prevention at UC Davis MIND Institute, a recipient of an Autism Speaks Environmental Innovator Award, is a co-author. Other study authors include Yi-Fan Zhang, Alicja Omanska-Klusek, Catherine Ross-Inta, Sarah Wong, Irva Hertz-Picciotto and Flora Tassone of UC Davis.

"The real challenge now is to try and understand the role of mitochondrial dysfunction in children with autism," said Pessah. "For instance, many environmental stressors can cause mitochondrial damage. Depending on when a child was exposed, maternally or neonatally, and how severe that exposure was, it might explain the range of the symptoms of autism."


'/>"/>

Contact: Jane E. Rubinstein
jrubinstein@rubenstein.com
212-843-8287
Autism Speaks
Source:Eurekalert  

Related biology news :

1. Gene links to anorexia found by Childrens Hospital of Philadelphia researchers
2. Childrens Hospital of Philadelphia collaborates in gene therapy success in an immune disorder
3. Study shows young, unsupervised children most at risk for dog bites
4. Fearless children show less empathy, more aggression
5. Overweight children have different eating patterns than normal weight children
6. Comprehensive nutrition services vital to childrens health
7. OHSU Doernbecher Childrens Hospital conducts second phase of landmark Batten study
8. Center to study effects of plastics chemicals on childrens health
9. Childrens agitation after surgery may be preventable
10. NIH funds Center of Excellence for Molecular Hematology at Cincinnati Childrens
11. Childrens Hospital LA discovers growth factor essential to epicardial cell function
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Children with autism more likely to have mitochondrial defects impacting cellular energy production
(Date:1/25/2016)... -- Glencoe Software, the world-leading supplier of image data management ... the data management solution OMERO Plus for the newly ... Photo - http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20160125/325328LOGO ... Phenotypic analysis measures the characteristics and behavior of cells, ... such as health and disease, the presence or absence ...
(Date:1/20/2016)... Jan. 20, 2016 A market that just ... benefit from the explosion in genomics knowledge. Learn all ... Research. A range of dynamic trends are pushing market ... personalized medicine - pharmacogenomics - pathogen evolution - next ... markets - greater understanding of the role of genetic ...
(Date:1/15/2016)... 2016 Recent publicized breaches in cyber security ... ways to ensure data security and user authentication in ... Android that ties a user,s mobile number ... a hardware authorization token. Customer service agents who employ ... their KodeKey enabled device to verify their identity.  Companies ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:2/9/2016)... Massachusetts , February 9, 2016 ... Enables Children to Take Part in Life-Changing Camp ... a new initiative designed to positively affect the lives of children ... disease care. --> SHPG ) is announcing a new ... rare diseases, as well as the future of rare disease care. ...
(Date:2/8/2016)... 8, 2016  CytRx Corporation (NASDAQ: CYTR ... in oncology, today announced that it has entered ... Hercules Technology Growth Capital, Inc. and Hercules Technology ... financing. --> --> ... of financing under the loan and security agreement.  ...
(Date:2/8/2016)... ... February 08, 2016 , ... Information Management Services ( ... The upgrade represents a completely new technical foundation and is so significant it ... responsive design interface, significantly increased speed for search results, a streamlined layout and a ...
(Date:2/8/2016)... FLINT, Mich. , Feb. 8, 2016  Diplomat Pharmacy, Inc. (NYSE: DPLO) announced today that ... as a specialty pharmacy resource–user-centric, story-driven, knowledge-based and mobile-friendly. ... ... ... "The ...
Breaking Biology Technology: