Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

6/18/2014 (10 months ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Trials conducted on laboratory mice prove successful; human trial to begin next year

An old drug used in the treatment of sleeping sickness has also temporarily reversed symptoms of autism in mice, researchers have claimed. Researchers say the drug restored normal cellular signaling in a mouse model of autism in animals that were the human biological age equivalent of 30 years old. The results came with a caveat: the effects in the laboratory only lasted for around five weeks.

Suramin, a well-known inhibitor of purinergic signaling, first synthesized in 1916 and is commonly used to treat trypanosomiasis or African sleeping sickness, a parasitic disease was used in trial runs on the mice.

Suramin, a well-known inhibitor of purinergic signaling, first synthesized in 1916 and is commonly used to treat trypanosomiasis or African sleeping sickness, a parasitic disease was used in trial runs on the mice.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

6/18/2014 (10 months ago)

Published in Health

Keywords: Suramin, autism, sleeping sickness, trial tests, mice


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - "Obviously correcting abnormalities in a mouse is a long way from a cure in humans, but we think this approach is a new and fresh way to think about and address the challenge of autism," Robert K. Naviaux at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine says.

One of the universal symptoms of autism, Naviaux says, is metabolic disturbances.

Get foodinto the hands of needy children -- by going here --

"Cells have a halo of metabolites (small molecules involved in metabolism, the set of chemical processes that maintain life) and nucleotides surrounding them.

"These create a sort of chemical glow that broadcasts the state of health of the cell."

Cells that are threatened or damaged by microbes, such as viruses or bacteria, or by physical forces or by chemicals, such as pollutants, react defensively, a part of the normal immune response. In this case, communications between cells are dramatically reduced.

If this occurs during childhood, for example, neuro-development is delayed. "Cells behave like countries at war," he says. "When a threat begins, they harden their borders. They don't trust their neighbors.

"One way to look at this related to autism is this: When cells stop talking to each other, children stop talking.

Suramin, a well-known inhibitor of purinergic signaling, first synthesized in 1916 and is commonly used to treat trypanosomiasis or African sleeping sickness, a parasitic disease was used in trial runs on the mice.
 
"The discovery that a single dose of medicine can fundamentally reset metabolism for weeks means that newer and safer drugs might not need to be given chronically," he said.

"Members of this new class of medicines might need to be given only intermittently during sensitive developmental windows to unblock metabolism and permit improved development in response to many kinds of behavioral and occupational therapies, and to natural play."

These recent findings dovetail with the idea that autism is caused by a multitude of interconnected factors: "Twenty percent of the known factors associated with autism are genetic, but most are not.

"It's wrong to think of genes and the environment as separate and independent factors. Genes and environmental factors interact. The net result of this interaction is metabolism."

Researchers found that suramin blocked the extracellular signaling pathway used by ATP and other mitokines in a mouse model of autism spectrum disorder (ASD), ending this cell danger response and related inflammation.

A single dose remained effective in the mice for about five weeks - but then washed out. Suramin also cannot be taken long-term since it can result in anemia and adrenal gland dysfunction.

Cells subsequently began behaving normally and autism-like behaviors and metabolism in the mice were corrected.

Naviaux said these and earlier findings are sufficiently encouraging to soon launch a small phase 1 clinical trial with children who have ASD later this year.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


Copywriter 2015 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for May 2015
Universal:
That, rejecting the culture of indifference, we may care for our neighbours who suffer, especially the sick and the poor.
Evangelization: That Mary's intercession may help Christians in secularized cultures be ready to proclaim Jesus.


Rosaries, Crosses, Prayer Cards and more... by Catholic Shopping .com


Comments


More Health

Important need-to-know symptoms and signs of skin cancer Watch

Image of

By Nikky Andres (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Eighty-one percent of people have expressed feelings of uncertainty over not knowing the signs of a non-melanoma skin cancer, according to a recent poll made by the British Association of Dermatologists. However, the majority of British people do not attend the ... continue reading


They're feeding this to your children! Horrific real-life school lunch disaster Watch

Image of A burned burrito, covered in the melted plastic from its wrapper, was served to kids at Philippi Middle School in West Virginia.

By Matt Waterson (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The quality of food served during school lunches have long been the butt of jokes in the U.S., but a recent meal served at a West Virginia school showed the horrifying reality of just what American children are being served. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - ... continue reading


12 unusual facts about smell and taste Watch

Image of

By Nikky Andres (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The associate director of the Center for Smell and Taste at the University of Florida, Steven D. Munger, Ph.D, has answered some questions posed to him on Reddit, on how we taste and smell things. Here is what we have learned from him, as shared by BuzzFeed. 1. Smell ... continue reading


Ready or not -- DNA editing makes giant step forward Watch

Image of Like it or not, gene editing in DNA has taken a giant leap forward -- and all the misuses that could possibly go with it are now closer to reality.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The mad scientist custom constructing a human being in the manner of Dr. Frankenstein in countless B-movies grows ever nearer in reality. A Chinese team, using a new laboratory technique to alter a gene in human embryos, has set off a debate over the ethics of ... continue reading


Genetic breakthrough could mark farewell to aging Watch

Image of Researchers suggest that the deterioration of these genetic bundles may play a role in the aging process.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Slowing the human ageing process, in addition to solving the riddles behind such diseases such as cancer, diabetes and Alzheimer's disease may lie in the way the body's genetic code holds itself. Scientists studying a rare disorder known as Werner syndrome have ... continue reading


Scientist reveals how one brain can control the movement in a separate body Watch

Image of

By Nikky Andres (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A neuroscientist demonstrated in a video, released last Tuesday, how a brain can control someone else's arm. MUNTINLUPA, PHILIPPINES (Catholic Online) - In the video, two volunteers were asked to go up on stage during a TED talk by neuroscientist Greg Gage. He is a TED ... continue reading


Brain tumor growth linked to increase in brain activity Watch

Image of

By Nikky Andres (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

New research connects brain tumor growth to brain activities. The researchers from Stanford, published in the journal Cell, have found that out of five malignant tumors, four of them are caused by activity in the cerebral cortex that increased the growth of high-grade ... continue reading


Doctors ordered to ask patients over 75 for end-of-life plan, hinting at 'do not resuscitate' options in UK Watch

Image of Old patients and those with cancer, dementia, heart disease or serious lung problems, despite young ages, will be asked the same in precaution to their health deterioration.

By Atarah Haely (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

General practitioners (GPs) are urged to ask their patients over 75-years-old for their end-of-life plans and if they want to be resuscitated or not, following the new guidelines issued by the National Health Service (NHS) in the United Kingdom. MUNTINLUPA, ... continue reading


HIV cases in Indiana spike to unprecedented levels causing a public health emergency Watch

Image of

By Hannah Raissa Marfil (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

There has been an outbreak of HIV infection in Indiana, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). With a small population in Scott County of only 4,200 residents, the rise of HIV cases to 142 has alarmed health officials, calling it a ... continue reading


HELP ON THE WAY? Malaria vaccine found to cut cases in half - lives of children could be spared Watch

Image of The vaccine, called RTS,S is the first malaria vaccine to reach advanced trials. Tests on 15,500 toddlers and babies in sub-Saharan Africa have been completed.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A new "jab" - or vaccination against malaria could prevent millions of cases and save the lives of millions of children in developing nations, scientists claim. The vaccine, completed the final stages of testing, could make a "substantial contribution" to ... continue reading


All Health News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Acts 14:19-28
19 Then some Jews arrived from Antioch and Iconium ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 145:10-11, 12-13, 21
10 All your creatures shall thank you, Yahweh, and ... Read More

Gospel, John 14:27-31
27 Peace I bequeath to you, my own peace I give you, ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for May 5th, 2015 Image

St. Hilary of Arles
May 5: Bishop of Arles, France, and friend and relative of St. ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter