Distinct Plasma Profile of Polar Neutral Amino Acids, Leucine, and Glutamate in Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders
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The goal of this investigation was to examine plasma amino acid (AA) levels in children with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD, N = 27) and neuro-typically developing controls (N = 20). We observed reduced plasma levels of most polar neutral AA and leucine in children with ASD. This AA profile conferred significant post hoc power for discriminating children with ASD from healthy children. Furthermore, statistical correlations suggested the lack of a typical decrease of glutamate and aspartate with age, and a non-typical increase of isoleucine and lysine with age in the ASD group. Findings from this limited prospective study warrant further examination of plasma AA levels in larger cross-sectional and longitudinal cohorts to adequately assess for relationships with developmental and clinical features of ASD.
KeywordsBlood Predictive value Polar neutral amino acids Leucine Glutamate
We thank study subjects and their families for participating in this study. This work was supported in part by a Simons Foundation Autism Research Initiative (SFARI) grant to Dr. Karen Parker and by the Escher Fund at the Silicon Valley Community Foundation to Dr. Antonio Hardan. Dr. Tetyana Obukhanych was supported by a postdoctoral training grant (NIH T32) from the Interdepartmental Immunology Program at Stanford University School of Medicine.
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