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Increased excretion of a lipid peroxidation biomarker in autism.

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  • 1Department of Neurosciences, UMDNJ-New Jersey Medical School, Newark, 07103, USA.


It is thought that autism could result from an interaction between genetic and environmental factors with oxidative stress as a potential mechanism linking the two. One genetic factor may be altered oxidative-reductive capacity. This study tested the hypothesis that children with autism have increased oxidative stress. We evaluated children with autism for the presence of two oxidative stress biomarkers. Urinary excretion of 8-hydroxy-2-deoxyguanosine (8-OHdG) and 8-isoprostane-F2alpha (8-iso-PGF2alpha) were determined in 33 children with autism and 29 healthy controls. 8-iso-PGF2alpha levels were significantly higher in children with autism. The isoprostane levels in autistic subjects were variable with a bimodal distribution. The majority of autistic subjects showed a moderate increase in isoprostane levels while a smaller group of autistic children showed dramatic increases in their isoprostane levels. There was a trend of an increase in 8-OHdG levels in children with autism but it did not reach statistical significance. There was no significant correlation between the levels of the biomarkers and vitamin intake, dietary supplements, medicine, medical disorders, or history of regression. These results suggest that the lipid peroxidation biomarker is increased in this cohort of autistic children, especially in the subgroup of autistic children.

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