Brief report: High frequency of biochemical markers for mitochondrial dysfunction in autism: no association with the mitochondrial aspartate/glutamate carrier SLC25A12 gene.
ABSTRACT In the present study we confirm the previously reported high frequency of biochemical markers of mitochondrial dysfunction, namely hyperlactacidemia and increased lactate/pyruvate ratio, in a significant fraction of 210 autistic patients. We further examine the involvement of the mitochondrial aspartate/glutamate carrier gene (SLC25A12) in mitochondrial dysfunction associated with autism. We found no evidence of association of the SLC25A12 gene with lactate and lactate/pyruvate distributions or with autism in 241 nuclear families with one affected individual. We conclude that while mitochondrial dysfunction may be one of the most common medical conditions associated with autism, variation at the SLC25A12 gene does not explain the high frequency of mitochondrial dysfunction markers and is not associated with autism in this sample of autistic patients.
Article: Mitochondrial Dysfunction in Autism.[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Using data of the current prevalence of autism as 200:10,000 and a 1:2000 incidence of definite mitochondrial (mt) disease, if there was no linkage of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and mt disease, it would be expected that 1 in 110 subjects with mt disease would have ASD and 1 in 2000 individuals with ASD would have mt disease. The co-occurrence of autism and mt disease is much higher than these figures, suggesting a possible pathogenetic relationship. Such hypothesis was initially suggested by the presence of biochemical markers of abnormal mt metabolic function in patients with ASD, including elevation of lactate, pyruvate, or alanine levels in blood, cerebrospinal fluid, or brain; carnitine level in plasma; and level of organic acids in urine, and by demonstrating impaired mt fatty acid β-oxidation. More recently, mtDNA genetic mutations or deletions or mutations of nuclear genes regulating mt function have been associated with ASD in patients or in neuropathologic studies on the brains of patients with autism. In addition, the presence of dysfunction of the complexes of the mt respiratory chain or electron transport chain, indicating abnormal oxidative phosphorylation, has been reported in patients with ASD and in the autopsy samples of brains. Possible pathogenetic mechanisms linking mt dysfunction and ASD include mt activation of the immune system, abnormal mt Ca(2+) handling, and mt-induced oxidative stress. Genetic and epigenetic regulation of brain development may also be disrupted by mt dysfunction, including mt-induced oxidative stress. The role of the purinergic system linking mt dysfunction and ASD is currently under investigation. In summary, there is genetic and biochemical evidence for a mitochondria (mt) role in the pathogenesis of ASD in a subset of children. To determine the prevalence and type of genetic and biochemical mt defects in ASD, there is a need for further research using the latest genetic technology such as next-generation sequencing, microarrays, bioinformatics, and biochemical assays. Because of the availability of potential therapeutic options for mt disease, successful research results could translate into better treatment and outcome for patients with mt-associated ASD. This requires a high index of suspicion of mt disease in children with autism who are diagnosed early.Seminars in pediatric neurology 09/2013; 20(3):163-175.
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ABSTRACT: Autism Spectrum Conditions (ASC) are a group of developmental conditions which affect communication, social interactions and behaviour. Mitochondrial oxidative dysfunction has been suggested as a mechanism of autism based on the results of multiple genetic association and expression studies. SLC25A12 is a gene encoding a calcium-binding carrier protein that localizes to the mitochondria and is involved in the exchange of aspartate for glutamate in the inner membrane of the mitochondria regulating the cytosolic redox state. rs2056202 SNP in this gene has previously been associated with ASC. SNPs rs6716901 and rs3765166 analysed in this study have not been previously explored in association with AS. We genotyped three SNPs (rs2056202, rs3765166, and rs6716901) in SLC25A12 in n = 117 individuals with Asperger syndrome (AS) and n = 426 controls, all of Caucasian ancestry. rs6716901 showed significant association with AS (P = 0.008) after correcting for multiple testing. We did not replicate the previously identified association between rs2056202 and AS in our sample. Similarly, rs3765166 (P = 0.11) showed no significant association with AS. The present study, in combination with previous studies, provides evidence for SLC25A12 as involved in the etiology of AS. Further cellular and molecular studies are required to elucidate the role of this gene in ASC.Molecular Autism 03/2014; 5(1):25. · 5.49 Impact Factor
Article: Autism Spectrum Disorders.[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) are collectively the most commonly diagnosed pediatric neurodevelopmental condition. ASDs include autism, pervasive developmental disorder-not otherwise specified (PDD-NOS), Rett syndrome and Asperger disorder. ASD is characterized by impaired communication and social interaction and may involve developmental delays and seizure disorders. Recent parent-reported diagnosis of ASD in the United States put it at higher levels (1:91) than previously thought, with its diagnosis in boys occurring 4 to 5 times more frequently than in girls (1:58).(1) CDC estimates are currently 1:110;(1) up from 1:150 in 2007.(2) Annual medical expenditures for those affected are generally four to six times greater than for those without ASD.(1) While twin studies demonstrate that genetics play a significant role in ASD, the impact of environment should not be underestimated, given the approximate 20-fold increase in incidence over the last 20 years.(3.)Global advances in health and medicine : improving healthcare outcomes worldwide. 09/2012; 1(4):62-74.