MOULD & AUTISM
The implications of toxins secreted by mold in autism spectrum disorders.
Children in general are particularly susceptible to the toxic effects of mycotoxins, due to their heightened sensitivity to immunological, nervous, endocrine and neurotoxic effects, as well as their overall exposure, considering their smaller body mass. The maternal immune protection from pregnancy and during weaning are often not enough to support a child’s immature immune system against these toxins, especially when considering that the detoxifying systems in the liver are not completely effective yet and that children are often treated with broad spectrum antibiotics, leading to further GI inflammation.
High occurrence of mould exposure in ASD patients
The vast majority of patients affected with ASD have evidence of mold toxins in their urine. A research group from Italy working for the National Council of Research as well as the Department of Food safety in Rome in a study of patients affected with autism found statistically significant differences in the amounts of urinary Ochratoxin A, a potent immunosuppressive toxin release by Aspergillus mold.
Mould in foodstuffs
Mycotoxins are produced by fungi, mainly by the aspergillus, fusarium and penicillium genera, and are not only inhaled in contaminated areas, but also found in our food products containing corn (high fructose corn syrup HFCS), peanuts, wheat, barley and grains (e.g. cereals, legumes), baby foods, infant formula, coffee, milk & other dairy products (e.g. yogurt), meat, spices, beer & wine, fruit .
Mould as a driver of systemic inflammation
More than 500 mycotoxins have been discovered, with new ones being added to the list regularly [7-9]. They are known to have toxic effects on the immune and neurological systems, generate inflammation and provoke damages to the intestinal barrier (e.g. “leaky gut”).
To review, here are some of the effects of mold toxins in humans: Aflatoxins: Genotoxic, immunotoxic, hepatotoxic, mutagenic (cancer) Ochratoxin A: Nephrotoxic, genotoxic, immunotoxic, neurotoxic, carcinogenic
Trichothecenes: Inhibit protein synthesis, emesis and diarrhea, weight loss, nervous disorders, cardiovascular alterations, immuno-depression, hemostatic derangements, skin toxicity, decreased reproductive capacity, and bone marrow damage, neurological system damage, oxidative stress in mitochondria
Gliotoxins: Potent immunosuppressant
Others: Depletion of Glutathione , Vitamin D receptor toxicity
It is generally believed that mold may colonize the GI tract and the sinuses and release toxins into the blood, causing the above problems, e.g. immunosuppression. It should also be noted that certain mycotoxins such as Ochratoxin A exert neurotoxicity especially in males.
William Shaw & Sydney Baker ASD Study + Markova study
The first indication of mold as a common problem in autism: based on the study published by Dr.William Shaw, et al. in 2000. 92.8% of a sample of 22 autistic boys had high levels of immune factors for aspergillus [mould]. They identified several compounds in the urine of children with Autism using gas chromatography mass spectrometry. Many of these compounds were associated with the presence of mold and yeast in the gastrointestinal tract. The children with Autism had significantly higher values compared to healthy controls in these compounds.
See discussion with William Shaw https://youtu.be/Kv9GkwdBShE
A recent study by Professor Nadya Markova from the Institute of Microbiology at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences found not only elevated immunoglobulins (IgA, IgG, IgM) against aspergillus in nearly all autistic subjects, but also the “Lform” aspergillus type, e.g. the actual mold, just deficient of its cell wall traveling through the blood.
'The unifying finding for autistic children and their mothers was the presence in blood of wall-free variants from life-cycle of Aspergillus fumigatus, a phenomenon of fungal “colonization” or “silent infection”. “Silent aspergillosis” may strongly influence development of immune and nervous systems in the early childhood and be a leading cause for neurodevelopmental disorders.'
Dr. Nadya Markova that found the presence of mold growth and mold antibodies in the blood samples of more than 90% of children with Autism and their mothers, indicating a possible prenatal transmission of mold from the mother to the baby in utero. The species of mold identified by antibody testing was Aspergillus fumigatus, one of the most lethal types of mold. https:// pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31527606/
There appears to be actual mold, not just their toxins, in the blood of individuals with autism (and to be honest, many, many other conditions most likely as well). No wonder we see cytokine elevations, oxidative stress, neuroinflammation, auto-immune (PANS) conditions, immunosuppression and gut problems in many individuals affected with autism. 7