Publication
Title
Serum tryptophan, tryptophan catabolites and brain-derived neurotrophic factor in subgroups of youngsters with autism spectrum disorders
Author
Abstract
Background: There is evidence that changes in neuro-immune responses coupled with dysfunctions in serotonin metabolism underpin the pathophysiology of autism spectrum disorders (ASD). Objective: This study aimed to delineate whether ASD subgroups or characteristics show aberrations in tryptophan and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) metabolism. Methods: 65 individuals with ASD (diagnosed according to ICD criteria) and 30 healthy control patients were included. Measured were serum levels of tryptophan, kynurenine (KYN), kynurenic acid (KA), quinolinic acid (QA), BDNF and PRO-BDNF and total blood 5-HT and 5-OH-tryptophan (5-HTP). Results: Elevated BDNF levels and lower tryptophan and KA levels were characteristics of both childhood autism and intellectual disability disorder, whilst elevated tryptophan and lower 5-HT synthesis were hallmarks of Asperger syndrome. A pathological MRI was associated with elevated tryptophan and lowered KA. Abnormal EEG results and dysmorphology were both associated with an elevated BDNF/ PRO-BDNF ratio. Any brain pathology and gastro-intestinal symptoms were accompanied by lowered KA. Conclusions: Increased BDNF production and changes in the metabolism of tryptophan are associated with many ASD characteristics, showing particularly strong associations with childhood autism and Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities. Peripheral BDNF and tryptophan metabolism appear to take part in the pathophysiology of autism spectrum disorders and their phenotypes.
Language
English
Source (journal)
CNS and neurological disorders drug targets
Publication
2018
ISSN
1871-5273
Volume/pages
17:8(2018), p. 626-639
ISI
000447813600007
Pubmed ID
30033880
Full text (Publisher's DOI)
UAntwerpen
Faculty/Department
Research group
Publication type
Subject
Affiliation
Publications with a UAntwerp address
External links
Web of Science
Record
Identification
Creation 09.11.2018
Last edited 15.07.2021
To cite this reference