Research: YUI and COLLEAGUES,

Listed in Issue 262


YUI and COLLEAGUES, 1. Research Institute of Pervasive Developmental Disorders, Ashiya University, 13-22 Rokurokusocho, Ashiya 659-8511, Hyogo, Japan. Electronic address:; 2. Department of Pediatrics, Dokkyo Medical University School of Medicine, 880 Kitakobayashi, Mibu 321-0293, Tochigi, Japan; 3. Department of Drug Evaluation and Informatics, School of Pharmaceutical Science, University of Shizuoka., 52-1 Yada, Shizuoka 422-8526, Japan studied links between the ratio of omega-3/omega-6 PUFAs and neuronal signalling in autism spectrum disorders (ASD).


The investigation of links between the ratio of omega-3/omega-6 PUFAs and neuronal signalling is a research priority in autism spectrum disorders (ASD).


The authors examine the relationships between the plasma ratios of docosahexaenoic acid (DHA)/arachidonic acid (AA) and eicopentaenoic acid (EPA)/AA and biomarkers of AA-related signalling mediators such as ceruloplasmin, transferrin and superoxide dismutase, in the behavioural symptoms of 28 individuals with ASD (mean age 13.5±4.6years) and 21 age- and gender-matched normal healthy controls (mean age 13.9±5.7years). Behavioural symptoms were assessed using the Aberrant Behaviour Checklists (ABC). We conducted controlling for dietary intake and assessed the dietary intake of nutrients.


There were no significant differences in intake of nutrients such as omega-3 and omega-6 PUFAs, saturated and unsaturated fatty acid, DHA, AA, iron and copper. Plasma EPA, DHA, and arachidic acid levels, and plasma DHA/AA and EPA/AA ratios were significantly higher, while plasma AA and adrenic acid were significantly lower in the 28 individuals with ASD than in the 21 normal controls. The ABC scores were significantly higher in the ASD group compared to the control group. The plasma ceruloplasmin levels in the ASD group were significantly reduced compared to those in the control group.


Increased plasma DHA/AA and EPA/AA ratios may be related to low plasma levels of ceruloplasmin which has neuroprotective properties. Reduced plasma ceruloplasmin levels may diminish the protective capacity against brain damage, and may contribute to the pathophysiology of behavioural symptoms in individuals with ASD.


Yui K1, Imataka G2, Kawasak Y3, Yamada H3. Increased ω-3 polyunsaturated fatty acid/arachidonic acid ratios and upregulation of signalling mediator in individuals with autism spectrum disorders. Life Sci. 145:205-12. Jan 15 2016. doi: 10.1016/j.lfs.2015.12.039. Epub Dec 24 2015.

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