Article

Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders

, Volume 16, Issue 1, pp 23-29

Dopamine-beta-hydroxylase (DBH) and homovanillic acid (HVA) in autistic children

  • C. GarnierAffiliated withLaboratoire de Neurophysiologie et de Thérapeutique en Pédopsychiatrie, C. H. U. Bretonneau
  • , E. ComoyAffiliated withUnité de Biologie Clinique, Institut Gustave Roussy
  • , C. BarthelemyAffiliated withLaboratoire de Neurophysiologie et de Thérapeutique en Pédopsychiatrie, C. H. U. Bretonneau
  • , I. LeddetAffiliated withLaboratoire de Neurophysiologie et de Thérapeutique en Pédopsychiatrie, C. H. U. Bretonneau
  • , B. GarreauAffiliated withLaboratoire de Neurophysiologie et de Thérapeutique en Pédopsychiatrie, C. H. U. Bretonneau
  • , J. P. MuhAffiliated withLaboratoire de Neurophysiologie et de Thérapeutique en Pédopsychiatrie, C. H. U. Bretonneau
  • , G. LelordAffiliated withLaboratoire de Neurophysiologie et de Thérapeutique en Pédopsychiatrie, C. H. U. Bretonneau

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Abstract

In the present study, plasma DBH activity and urinary HVA levels were measured in 19 autistic and 15 normal children. DBH activity was significantly elevated in the 8 less retarded autistic patients. In this subgroup, a negative correlation was found between plasma DBH and urinary HVA levels. These results support the hypothesis of a possible involvement of brain catecholamine dysfunction in the production of autistic symptoms.