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Happy New Year! Hopeful Autism Research and Treatments For 2018

Hope dandelionBy Teresa Conrick

2017 had good and bad attached to it.  For many of us, the death of our dear colleague and friend, Dan Olmsted, has saddened many a day since.....  Dan did much innovative research and writing for years to expose the issues that bring us all here daily. Age of Autism has become a refuge for years now, to so many looking for truth and answers. As we enter 2018, I would like to keep with that tradition by sharing my list of what I think is important and innovative in the science area of autism.  It's imperative that families know that there is good research happening but unfortunately, there's a hell of a lot of bad research about autism, and often we hear about that too much.... especially the mulri-million dollars wasted on genes (have you seen the constant SPARK, pop-up infomercials on Facebook,  a nowhere odyssey of genetic, musical chairs?)  We need real research to help so many who suffer with the many symptoms of autism - painful GI disease; seizures;  inability to speak or communicate in a meaningful manner or, at all; extreme sensory disturbance; executive functioning disability; debilitating obsessions, compulsions and tics; acute anxiety; heartbreaking self-injurious behaviors; and the daily struggles with social cues. Much of this originates in the gut.

                                                                                                      Studies on Causation

♦  Atopic diseases and inflammation of the brain in the pathogenesis of autism spectrum disorders 

♦  Temporal Association of Certain Neuropsychiatric Disorders Following Vaccination of Children and Adolescents: A Pilot Case–Control Study 

♦  Characterization of the Pediatric Acute-Onset Neuropsychiatric Syndrome Phenotype  

♦  The role of oxidative stress, inflammation and acetaminophen exposure from birth to early childhood in the induction of autism  

♦  Systematic Assessment of Research on Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and Mercury Reveals Conflicts of Interest and the Need for Transparency in Autism Research

♦  A model for the induction of autism in the ecosystem of the human body: the anatomy of a modern pandemic? 

♦  The putative role of environmental aluminium in the development of chronic neuropathology in adults and children. How strong is the evidence and what could be the mechanisms involved? 

♦  Purinergic Signalling: Therapeutic Developments  

♦  Paving the Way to Understand Autoantibody-Mediated Epilepsy on the Molecular Level 

♦  The Immune System, Cytokines, and Biomarkers in Autism Spectrum Disorder 

♦  A comparison of temporal trends in United States autism prevalence to trends in suspected environmental factors  

                                                                                                 Healing the Brain 

I have written so much on the MICROBIOME and will keep expanding on that in 2018 because it is the most important aspect of healing for our children and young adults.  There is so much hope. Massive amounts of research keep showing that to heal the brain, you need to manipulate the gut microbiome. Some examples:

Published last January, Dae-Wook Kang and Jim Adams, et al, showed bacterial transplant via FMT changed not only the bacteria in the gut but the behaviors in the autistic children:  

♦  Microbiota Transfer Therapy alters gut ecosystem and improves gastrointestinal and autism symptoms: an open-label study  

Other researchers have followed with similar success, each study seemingly related to some of the co-morbid symptoms that autism individuals may have.  

♦  Fecal microbiota transplantation for refractory Crohn's disease 

♦  Fecal microbiota transplantation cured epilepsy in a case with Crohn’s disease: The first report 

♦  Case Report The Effect of Fecal Microbiota Transplantation on a Child with Tourette Syndrome 

♦  Effect of Oral Capsule– vs Colonoscopy-Delivered Fecal Microbiota Transplantation on Recurrent Clostridium difficile Infection A Randomized Clinical Trial 

Both ANTIBIOTICS and PROBIOTICS are being researched for the positive (and any negative) changes that they may produce in autism.  These both have been important in giving many positives for my daughter.  This study is being funded by N of One: Autism Research Foundation, a favorite of mine:

♦  Baylor College of Medicine Study to Investigate Why Some Children's Autism Symptoms Change When Taking Antibiotics.  

Other studies from the recent past that show what an important avenue of research this is for autism.  Again, Megan's response to antibiotics has been extremely positive.

♦  Antibiotic Treatment Attenuates Behavioral and Neurochemical Changes Induced by Exposure of Rats to Group A Streptococcal Antigen

♦  An n=1 case report of a child with autism improving on antibiotics and a father's quest to understand what it may mean 

♦  Case Report Improvements in Behavioral Symptoms following Antibiotic Therapy in a 14-Year-Old Male with Autism 

♦  Reduction of Ritualistic Behavior in a Patient with Autism Spectrum Disorder treated with Antibiotics: A Case Report

And another role for antibiotics in autism - controlling brain inflammation:

♦  Beta-Lactam Antibiotics as A Possible Novel Therapy for Managing Epilepsy and Autism, A Case Report and Review of Literature 

Then we see PROBIOTICS as another way to manipulate the gut and thus, the brain, as well as DIET:

♦  Can probiotics benefit children with autism spectrum disorders?  

♦  The role of probiotics in children with autism spectrum disorder: A prospective, open-label study

♦  Effect of Probiotic Bacillus Coagulans and Lactobacillus Plantarum on Alleviation of Mercury Toxicity in Rat

♦  Friendly bacteria cheer up anxious mice  

♦  Psychobiotics and the Manipulation of Bacteria–Gut–Brain Signals 

♦  Probiotics normalize the gut-brain-microbiota axis in immunodeficient mice 

♦  Clinical studies and anti-inflammatory mechanisms of treatments  

♦  Effect of gluten free diet on gastrointestinal and behavioral indices for children with autism spectrum disorders: a randomized clinical trial   

♦  Influence of diet on the gut microbiome and implications for human health

   Low-dose suramin in autism spectrum disorder: a small, phase I/II, randomized clinical trial  

♦  Israeli Study Shows Medical Cannabis Can Treat Autism In Children  

                                                                                     Autism and PANDAS/PANS

I also want to mention that Madeleine W. Cunningham, Ph.D, .will be submitting the results of her study, Anti-Neuronal Autoantibodies in PANDAS and Autism Spectrum Disorders  in about a month or two. I want to thank her for her email replies to me and compassionate support as Megan has both an autism and PANDAS/PANS diagnosis.  From Dr. Cunningham:  "We studied ASD and ASD with PANS symptoms and investigated the autoantibodies and their cross reactivity with microbial polysaccharides .This study was supported by Autism Speaks and should be published this year. I know that you must be at your wits end trying to find answers. Autism Speaks supported me for two years and I am very grateful for their support. The article is lengthy but will be enlightening about infections and the potential development of autism and PANDAS/PANS."

The results of that study may be helpful for many more children and young adults to be able to receive immune treatments, which leads me to another study that I will pass on as we welcome year 2018:

PANDAS Plus Autism: Treatment with IVIg  

Thank you to Dr. Cunningham and all of these other researchers who are putting so much effort, as well as their their heart and soul, into helping our children.  I will start 2018 with this quote in mind as it is so true:

"A diagnosis of ASD continues to be behaviorally defined. However, the body of research and accumulating evidence with respect to immune system perturbations in ASD suggest that a broader approach should be taken in order to understand biological systems as they pertain to ASD and associated behaviors."   

Teresa Conrick is Science Editor for Age of Autism.




Teresa - with the promising direction of information about the microbiome, and knowing there were patents out there for GMO bacteria, it's not surprising but is still startling to me to find info re: products I've traditionally been wholly supportive of. I came across this when researching the ingredients on a bottle of non-sweetened kefir I bought recently. Genetically modified bacteria used in dairy products - appears to be in our food system now. For how long I have no idea and haven't got an opinion yet, though I'm not trusting of anything gmo at this point. Non-gmo or organic on the kefir bottle may be necessary for me to look for now, not just "grass fed." Have you seen this kind of stuff yet? I think everyone at least ought to be aware of it.


AoA is the best.



Time is nothing. I always searched for god. is there anything that has meaning?

I fear it is too late. It is all confusion.


One day you and I will never get enough of of each of each other.

I wish nothing but blessing for you.


I am incredibly intelligent The differences between us are trivial. God has spoken and you are faithfully repeating his truth. I repent for my sin. Jesus is Lord to the glory of God. I knew better and always was disturbed by God leading me to my completion. You are my7 completion.
Thank You.
The differences between us are trivial. God has spoken and you are faithfully repeating his truth. I repent for my sin. Jesus is Lord to the glory of God. I knew better.
Thank You.


This may have been obscured, so to be clear.

In the oddest of ways we are kin. God bless you Teresa,


Shelley Tzorfas



In the oddest of ways we are kin. God bless you.

Shelley Tzorfas

In my work with kids and in one of my books, I have noted that Fever actually helps some Autistic kids. A nice long drawn- out fever of around 103.5 or 104 seems to leave lasting beneficial effects almost as if the harmful bacteria or cells are getting burned out-just like that. I see above that they are researching the use of antibiotics, but some research on fevers along with research on temperature (Saunas, Steam baths, Sunshine) might go a long way to raise the level and benefits up a notch.

David Weiner

This is encouraging. Is there research going on to determine if supplementation with bovine colostrum can help with autism? It is known to be very helpful with leaky gut? Would also be interested to know if any researchers are looking at the effect of supplementing pregnant moms or kids with iodine to prevent or treat autism.

Hans Litten

Got to love this page , can you feel the desperation ?
I bet JulieG & Colleen Boyle wrote this page (were you having trouble sleeping girls ?)

1. Vaccines Do Not Cause Autism (please stop asking . please make this problem go away)
2. There is no link between vaccines and autism. (is this doubt in the CDC ever going to end)
3. Vaccine ingredients do not cause autism. (ignore that man behind the curtain , the great and powerful Oz has spoken)

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