Could a Century-Old Drug Ease Autism Symptoms?

Small study produced positive results with the sleeping sickness medication suramin, but more research needed
Source: WebMD Health - Category: Consumer Health News Source Type: news

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The hypothalamus–pituitary–adrenal (HPA) axis acts to release cortisol into the blood stream, as cortisol calls the body into action to combat stress. When high amounts of cortisol interact with the hypothalamus, the HPA axis will slow down its activity. The amygdala detects stress, while the prefrontal cortex regulates our reactions to stress. Source: Bezdek K and Telzer E (2017) Have No Fear, the Brain is Here! How Your Brain Responds to Stress. Front. Young Minds. 5:71. doi: 10.3389/frym.2017.00071 _______ [Editor’s note: Continued from yesterday’s Exploring the human brain and how it responds to...
Source: SharpBrains - Category: Neuroscience Authors: Tags: Cognitive Neuroscience Education & Lifelong Learning Health & Wellness #WorldHealthDay brain burnout cognition Cortisol GAS General Adaptation Syndrome homeostasis memory neurobiology neurological exhaustion Stress Source Type: blogs
Conclusions: Results indicate that maternal thyroid conditions are associated with increased ASD risk in progeny, but suggestively not due to direct effects of thyroid hormones. Instead, factors that influence maternal thyroid function could have etiologic roles in ASD through pathways independent of maternal gestational thyroid hormones and thus be unaffected by medication treatment. Factors known to disrupt thyroid function should be examined for possible involvement in ASD etiology.
Source: Epidemiology - Category: Epidemiology Tags: Women’s Health Source Type: research
by Lucas J. Cunningham, Jessica K. Lingley, I ñaki Tirados, Johan Esterhuizen, Mercy Opiyo, Clement T. N. Mangwiro, Mike J. Lehane, Stephen J. Torr BackgroundLarge-scale control of sleeping sickness has led to a decline in the number of cases of Gambian human African trypanosomiasis (g-HAT) to
Source: PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases - Category: Tropical Medicine Authors: Source Type: research
Individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) are often behaviorally hyper-reactive to light touch, but it is unclear to what degree this arises from a fundamental sensory difference vs. higher order systems for attention or emotion processing. Thus far, experimental findings for light touch detection are mixed, and few previous studies have independently considered sensitivity (the ability to discriminate signal from noise) and decision criterion (the overall response bias or tendency to answer “yes” or “no” in a detection task). We tested a large sample of children, adolescents, and adults with ...
Source: Frontiers in Human Neuroscience - Category: Neuroscience Source Type: research
AbstractEfforts to identify the causes of autism spectrum disorders have highlighted the importance of both genetics and environment, but the lack of human models for many of these disorders limits researchers ’ attempts to understand the mechanisms of disease and to develop new treatments. Induced pluripotent stem cells offer the opportunity to study specific genetic and environmental risk factors, but the heterogeneity of donor genetics may obscure important findings. Diseases associated with unusuall y high rates of autism, such asSCN2A syndromes, provide an opportunity to study specific mutations with high effect...
Source: Molecular Autism - Category: Molecular Biology Source Type: research
r P Abstract Suramin is a hundred years old and still being used to treat the first stage of acute human sleeping sickness, caused by Trypanosoma brucei rhodesiense Suramin is a multifunctional molecule with a wide array of potential applications, from parasitic and viral diseases to cancer, snakebite and autism. Suramin is also an enigmatic molecule: What are its targets? And how does it get into cells in the first place? Here we provide an overview on the many different candidate targets of suramin, discuss modes of action, and routes of cellular uptake. We reason that once the polypharmacology of suramin is und...
Source: Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy - Category: Microbiology Authors: Tags: Antimicrob Agents Chemother Source Type: research
FRIDAY, May 26, 2017 -- A drug first used in the early 1900s to treat sleeping sickness has shown promise in an early trial as a potential treatment for autism. The study involved just 10 boys, aged 5 to 14, with autism. This was the first human...
Source: Drugs.com - Daily MedNews - Category: General Medicine Source Type: news
(University of California - San Diego) In a small, randomized Phase I/II clinical trial (SAT1), researchers at University of California San Diego School of Medicine say a 100-year-old drug called suramin, originally developed to treat African sleeping sickness, was safely administered to children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), who subsequently displayed measurable, but transient, improvement in core symptoms of autism.
Source: EurekAlert! - Medicine and Health - Category: International Medicine & Public Health Source Type: news
Congratulations to Disruptive Women in Health Care Dr. Concetta Tomaino who continues to show us the power of music to heal. The following post by Deborah Harkins first appeared in Women’s Voices for Change on July 11, 2016. Concetta Tomaino with her late colleague Dr. Oliver Sacks, to whom Dustin Hoffman presented the Music Has Power award in 2006. Music! We know it can stimulate, excite, soothe, transport . . . . indeed, it sometimes sparks emotion so pleasurable that it actually sends chills down the spine. (Like sex, cocaine other abused drugs, and food, music triggers the area of the brain that release...
Source: Disruptive Women in Health Care - Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Tags: Uncategorized Source Type: blogs
Researchers previously reported that a drug used for almost a century to treat trypanosomiasis, or sleeping sickness, reversed environmental autism-like symptoms in mice. Now, a new study suggests that a genetic form of autism-like symptoms in mice are also corrected with the drug, even when treatment was started in young adult mice.
Source: ScienceDaily Headlines - Category: Science Source Type: news
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