, Volume 16, Issue 1, pp 23-29

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

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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.