April 14, 2008

WaPo Reports on Mitochondrial Disorders and Autism

Another article on John Shoffner's presentation.

I would like to call attention to the fact that mitochondrial disorders are not purely of genetic origin, but also the result of toxic injuries from ingredients found in vaccines like thimerosal and aluminum and also pesticides and medications like AZT.

I am of the opinion that one of the reasons that HHS didn't give Jon Poling a hearing on his daughter's autism/vaccine injury claims, and just conceded that her mito disorder plus vaccines triggered her autism, was that they knew he would be able to prove the whole process was started by her vaccines. His multiple hit theory that her first round of shots gave her the mitochondrial disorder and her last interacted with them to trigger the autism is probably right, and they know it, so best to keep part one of the process underwraps and still try to get away with calling it a 'rare genetic condition' even if they had to admit to the last part.

The media is apparently not ready to report that these mitochondrial dysfunctions that interact with vaccines to cause autism as in Hannah's case, can themselves be triggered by an earlier round of shots, but I am sure that someone will get bold and report it soon.

Things are changing faster and faster as Kent Heckenlively so eloquently expressed when he compared the fall of the 'no link' party line and it's CDC proponents to the exponentially speedy fall of communism.


UPDATE: Boyd Haley, Ph.D. Chemistry Department Chair at the University of Kentucky checks in.

"The research of Dr. Jill James showing lower reduced glutathione levels in autistics is a very strong indication that these children are suffering from oxidative stress. Dr. Woody McGinnis has research that indicates this also. Low glutathione can be caused by many toxic insults , including viral, bacterial and heavy metal or organic toxicants. Old men with muscle wasting disease have low glutathione levels which can be treated with some effectiveness with melatonin according to a past publication. Melatonin reportedly (Dr. Bernie Rimland) was one item that helped many autistics. Basically, I think that treating glutathione production by appropriate (and I don’t know what that is at this time) supplementation and removing any toxicant involved would be the best approach towards improving these children." - Boyd Haley


"Regarding “the cause for mitochondrial disorders quest” just google or medline ‘mercury effects on mitochondria’. Researchers have made careers looking for genetic causes of mitochondrial disorders in certain patients without ever eliminating the likely possibility that these individuals are mercury toxic or toxic with some other heavy metal. Trust me, not one single genetic screen of individuals with mitochondrial disorder will have included a survey of the number of dental amalgams the individuals had---and mercury from amalgams accounts for about 80% of the total mercury body burden. Now, consider that 85% of dentists have abnormal porphyrin profiles that indicate they are mercury toxic as do a large percentage of autistic children. The site of inhibition of the porphyrin profile is on the inner mitochondrial membrane---so mercury is in the mitochondria and doing biological damage on porphyrin (or heme) synthesis and WE DON’T KNOW ALL OF WHAT ELSE IT IS DOING. But we do know that in tests both the citric acid cycle and the electron transport system (ETS) are dramatically inhibited by low levels of mercury." - Boyd Haley

Muscle Weakness Found in Some Autistic Children
By Serena Gordon
Washington Post
Sunday, April 13, 2008; 12:00 AM

SUNDAY, April 13 (HealthDay News) -- New research suggests that muscle weakness in a child with autism may point to an underlying genetic defect that's causing mitochondrial disease, which means the muscles don't get the energy they need.

Conversely, it's possible that the mitochondrial disease may also play a role in the development of autism, perhaps by preventing the brain from getting the energy it needs to perform properly, the researchers noted.

"In large studies of kids with autism, about 20 percent have markers of mitochondrial disease in the blood," explained Dr. John Shoffner, an associate professor of biology at Georgia State University and president of Medical Neurogenetics.

Shoffner recently completely a retrospective analysis of 37 children with autism spectrum disorders and found that 65 percent of these children -- children who had been referred to him because their doctors suspected additional problems -- had mitochondrial defects.

He was expected to present the findings April 13 at the American Academy of Neurology's annual meeting, in Chicago.

Mitochondria are found in every cell of the body, with the exception of red blood cells, according to the United Mitochondrial Disease Foundation (UMDF). Mitochondria are vital to survival, because they make oxygen available to cells and metabolize food into energy for cells to thrive. Defects in mitochondria can lead to cell injury, or even cell death, according to UMDF.

Symptoms of mitochondrial disease depend on which body system is affected but may include muscle weakness, loss of muscle control, poor growth, heart disease, diabetes, developmental delays, an increased risk of infection and more.

Shoffner said that the mitochondrial energy production system is the only one in the body that requires two genomes to work -- genes inherited from both the mother and the father, and genes exclusively from the mother. "To make this system work, it requires a lot of genes. Hence the opportunity for lots of problems," said Shoffner, who added that there are several hundred known mitochondrial disorders.

Twenty-four (65 percent) of the children included in this study had genetic defects in their skeletal muscles. However, that doesn't mean that 65 percent of children with autism likely have mitochondrial disease. This was a select population of kids with autism, ones that had specifically been referred, because their doctors suspected a problem.

But, Shoffner pointed out that as many as one in five youngsters with autism spectrum disorders have shown signs of mitochondrial disease.

"If you're talking about 20 percent of kids with autism, that's a whole lot of children, and may represent an important segment of the autism spectrum disorder population. And we may be getting a foothold into the underlying cause of autism spectrum disorders," he said, adding, "This is a really important step forward that lets us put effort into understanding the mechanisms of disease."

"This study is a call to action. We need to know what is the real prevalence of mitochondrial conditions in children with autism," said Geraldine Dawson, chief science officer for Autism Speaks. "The more we can identify these subgroups of kids, the more we're going to parse apart the many forms of autism. This gives us clues to etiology."

"If we find that mitochondrial disease is a prevalent condition, having a better understanding of the kinds of symptoms that children may show if they have it might be helpful for parents," she said.

Shoffner said these findings may also open up new avenues of research into potentially more effective treatments for the future.


SOURCES: John M. Shoffner, M.D., associate professor, biology, Georgia State University, and president, Medical Neurogenetics, Atlanta; Geraldine Dawson, Ph.D., chief science officer, Autism Speaks; April 13, 2008, presentation, American Academy of Neurology annual meeting, Chicago


Sara B. said...

I have recently (last week) created a blog to help chronicle my thoughts and research into vaccine safety. I am new to the topic but was finding so much info, I just had to put it all in a place my friends could find it, too! You are clearly one of those moms in whose footsteps I am following, and I refer to your blog just about every day now. Just wanted to introduce myself and thank you for your blog.

Sara B. said...

one more comment...I just tried emailing you but the box was full. Turns out our mothers have a common friend - I got an email from your mom today about the rally. Just wanted to send you a note about that!
P.S. Thanks for coming by my blog :)