Should I Give My Child With Autism Tetrahydrobiopterin?

Hi, Dr. Theresa Lyons here, creative navigating autism and eat to heal autism. And this week’s ask dr Lyon’s question pertains to co-morbidities, specifically metabolic disorders. And the one we’re going to look at today is Tetra hydro biopterin. Yes, we’re looking at BH for dysfunction in autism. So if your child has low neurotransmitter issues, so things like low muscle tone. 

[00:00:28] Difficulty swallowing, loss of coordination. Those are all indicators of low neurotransmitter levels. This video, you’re definitely gonna watch. So, uh, let’s get to the science. Understanding your child’s comorbidities that go along with their autism is an important step in optimal outcomes. So today we will deep dive into one of them. 

[00:00:52] Autism comorbidities. Co-morbidity is defined as the simultaneous presence of two chronic diseases or conditions in a patient and treatments of these comorbidities are well known. Therefore, there’s no reason for your child to suffer which certain comorbidities. It’s really something to focus on when you’re healing autism. 

[00:01:14] You’re healing autism. Okay. All the related symptoms and other comorbidities. Here’s a list of comorbidities, seizure and epilepsy, neurotransmitter disorders, sleep disorders, metabolic disorders, and today we’re going to do a deep dive into Tetra, hydro, biopterin, immune disorders and gastrointestinal disorders. 

[00:01:40] So let’s get into Tetra hydro biopterin. Here’s what Tetra hydro biopterin looks like. And I will say it is commonly abbreviated BH for cause. When you’re talking, it’s a mouthful at times. What does it do? It is involved in the breakdown of fennel alanine, which then can be further involved in tyrasine as well as dopamine. 

[00:02:05] A neurotransmitter. The age four is also involved in the production of monoamine neurotransmitters, the production of nitric oxide, and it’s a necessary hydrogen providing cool factor for tryptofan to become five HTP. Which then becomes serotonin and two steps from that, you can have melatonin. So you can see how if you have a child who, let’s say is having sleep issues, yes, it could be related to melatonin, but in order for melatonin to be created, many other steps have to be occurring before then. 

[00:02:44] So it’s really important that when we start looking at the body, start looking at different comorbidities that. We focus as granular as possible, and this is assuming when you started healing autism, you started with special diets and you started doing some of these kind of large step movements. If you’ve done that successfully, then this is where you can get into comorbidities and very granular things such as Tetra, hydro, biotech. 

[00:03:13] Indications of need. This is important to understand because not everyone with autism needs to look at their BH. For many who are deficient in four experience, high levels of phenol alanine. Now this is usually tested at birth, so if there are extreme high levels of phenylalanine, it will be picked up at birth. 

[00:03:37] However. Our bodies continue to grow and change. So this is not consistently monitored at all times, but this is a pretty easy blood test to have your physician order. No. Their indication of need is low neurotransmitter levels. And what does that look like? That looks like lack of muscle tone over production of saliva and it’s, it’s really more often difficulty swallowing or you’ll see someone drooling and. 

[00:04:06] Many times it’s just because swallowing is difficult. And again, that’s due to low neurotransmitters cause you have to have that coordination from the brain telling all the muscles in the throat to swallowing, coordinate, and continue to breathe. You know, all those very easy things that many of us take for granted, which when you have low neurotransmitter levels can become quite difficult. 

[00:04:29] Loss of coordination, abnormal movements or spasms, delayed motor development. And another indication of need is failure to thrive, BH for an autism. So that’s what we’re all here for. And that’s what I like to focus these videos specifically on cerebral spinal fluid of those with autism have shown low levels of BH for. 

[00:04:53] So what that really means is, alright, in the spinal fluid, you have low levels of VH, four that can translate to central nervous system, low levels of VH four, which then impacts directly into the central nervous system neurotransmitters. Okay. There have been numerous clinical trials studying BH for both double blind placebo controlled crossover trials, which are like the Holy grail all the way down to open label trials, meaning everybody knows what everyone’s getting. 

[00:05:25] I was, I was actually quite shocked to learn and read how many clinical trials have been done studying BH for in autism. So I just pulled out one. Uh, to discuss the results on it. It’s a more recent one. It’s 2013 and in this clinical trial, there were 46 children. Their age was between three and seven years old. 

[00:05:46] All of them had an autism diagnosis and they were randomly assigned to double blind treatment. Their treatment was 20 milligrams per kilogram per day of BH four for the placebo for 16 weeks. And I pulled out a quote from that study and it said, these results indicate that the age four offers promise in reducing symptoms of ASD and the specific symptoms that they found in this clinical trial, that page four, improve for social awareness, autism, mannerisms, hyperactivity, and inappropriate speech. 

[00:06:20] So. No, I’m not. Every single child with autism needs BH for or will benefit from BH four so just think back to the earliest slide with indications of need, and that’s really how you start the conversation with your physician as to, is this something my child would need. Tetrahydrabine biopterin treatment. 

[00:06:44] So there are disorders of Tetra, hydro biopterin deficiency, and those are well known. You don’t have to have autism to have this type of deficiency. And again, you can have lots of them and not have Tetra hydro biopterin deficiency. But these deficiencies can be classified as transient, mild or severe, and treatment depends upon severity. 

[00:07:09] Some of the treatment can include neurotransmitter precursors. If it’s severe enough. There is one FDA approved medication. It’s BioMarin’s Covad, and it’s FDA approved to reduce blood levels of phenol alanine. Many physicians have used this off label for those with autism, Tetra, hydro, biopterin, and diet. 

[00:07:32] Do you know I’m a strong advocate for optimizing your child’s diet when they’re healing autism, but you can’t get VH war from diet. It’s really, there’s not a good source of BH war from diet. Our body makes it and certain bacterial strains to make it too. Those are the autism are known to have abnormal microbiota, and this is why special diets that focus on rebuilding the gut are so efficient in healing autism symptoms and or co-morbidities at the same time. 

[00:08:10] So if your child has an abnormal microbiota, has lots of GI issues, if you went for testing forms, their microbiota, special diets, and there are a few special diets that focus on rebuilding the gut, specifically are extremely beneficial in many, many efficient ways of healing autism symptoms and or co-morbidities. 

[00:08:36] That’s just the facts and here are some references in case you want to do some further reading.