The soaring incidence of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a growing concern, with environmental factors and genetic predispositions being suspected contributors.
A groundbreaking study by researchers at Rowan-Virtua School of Osteopathic Medicine and Rutgers University-New Jersey Medical School reveals a potential biochemical link between the inability to detoxify bisphenol A (BPA) and the development of ASD and ADHD in children.
BPA and Neurodevelopmental Disorders
BPA, a common plastic additive, has been previously associated with neurodevelopmental disorders like autism.
The study found children with ASD and ADHD often exhibit decreased efficiency in detoxifying BPA, leaving them exposed to higher concentrations of BPA for extended periods.
This reduced ability to clear BPA is related to a deficiency in a critical detoxification process known as glucuronidation, which is pivotal for eliminating toxins from the body by making them water-soluble.
The Biochemical Linkage
The study delves deep into the biochemical pathways and examines how the reduced ability to glucuronidate BPA is related to the development of ASD and ADHD.
The study’s findings provide the first substantial biochemical evidence tying BPA exposure to the development of these neurodevelopmental disorders, showing that children with autism and ADHD have approximately 10% and 17% less ability, respectively, to add a glucose molecule to BPA compared to control children.
Scope of Study and Findings
In the study, researchers analyzed the glucuronidation efficiency in children with autism, ADHD, and in healthy children, revealing a compromised ability to clear BPA in a significant proportion of children with neurodevelopmental disorders.
However, this compromised ability is not universal among all children with these disorders.
Further Research and Implications:
While these findings represent a breakthrough in understanding the link between BPA and neurodevelopmental disorders, more research is necessary to discern whether the development of autism and ADHD is due to increased exposure to BPA in utero or post-birth.
These findings highlight the need to explore other potential factors and pathways contributing to the development of ASD and ADHD and emphasize the importance of mitigating exposure to environmental toxins, especially in genetically susceptible individuals.
This study brings forth groundbreaking evidence that establishes a biochemical connection between decreased BPA detoxification and the occurrence of ASD and ADHD in children.
The compromised ability to detoxify BPA through glucuronidation might be a major pathway influencing the development of these disorders, necessitating further research to understand the exact mechanisms and to develop preventive and therapeutic strategies.
The identification of this biochemical linkage is crucial for designing interventions and mitigating the risks associated with BPA exposure in susceptible children.
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The research findings can be found in PLOS ONE.
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