How Metallomics is Supporting the Mission of Dwoskin Family Foundation in Discovering Root Causes of Autism

Scientists from the Health Science Library and La Belle Vie Research Laboratory in Tokyo, Japan, used metallomics to understand the roles metals play in people with autism.

For the study, hair samples from 1,967 children aged 0-15 were used to identify 26 trace elements.  Some of these elements included zinc, magnesium, and calcium (Metal Group 1), as well as aluminum, cadmium, and lead (Metal Group 2).

What the study found was that children with deficiencies of Metal Group 1 accounted for 1,000+ of the study’s participants and that children with high burdens of Metal Group 2 accounted for about 600 participants.

What is Metallomics?

Joanna Szpunar, a chemist focused on the speciation and fractionation of metalloids in biological systems, defines metallomics as:

The comprehensive analysis of the entirety of metal and metalloid species within a cell or tissue type.

While it’s a fairly new research method compared to traditional methods of biological research, it has successfully helped scientists discover and measure metallic elements in various biological systems.  The Tokyo-based metallomics study referred to above is an example of this.

What is the Dwoskin Family Foundation?

The Dwoskin Family Foundation is a non-profit created by Albert Dwoskin and Claire Dwoskin.

Dedicated to funding research that helps shed light on neurodevelopmental disorders, autism spectrum disorders, childhood safety, and, most recently, aluminum’s harmful effect on the human body, The Dwoskin Family Foundation is undoubtedly a philanthropic organization meeting an urgent public need.

In 2014, the Children’s Medical Safety Research Institute (CMSRI) is expanding upon and continuing the work of The Dwoskin Family Foundation.

According to CMSRI’s website, one of the missions of the non-profit is to:

Provide scientific research to address gaps in the knowledge about the biological and genetic risk factors for vaccine induced brain and immune dysfunction, including lack of adequate safety data, particularly for delayed or chronic health outcomes.

This mission of both the Dwoskin Family Foundation and the new CMSRI is what inspired the funding of scientific research that fills in the “gaps in knowledge.”  A portion of the latest scientific research funded by CMSRI is featured in the new documentary, The Age of Aluminum.

The metallomic study also underscores the need for more research into the impacts of metal toxicity as it relates to age-related neurological conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease. A study that Dr. Mercola refers to as the First Case Study to Show Direct Link Between Alzheimer’s and Aluminum Toxicity – also supports the urgent mission of CMSRI.

What Does Metal Analysis Mean for Autism?

Not all metalloid species are bad for mental and physical health.  In fact, some species are required by the body.  Balanced amounts of magnesium and zinc, for instance, promote human health.  When traces of these elements are low, health suffers.

This was confirmed by the metallomic study that determined which metalloid species were abnormally low in children with autism.

According to the study, the amount of children with autism with deficiencies of metalloid species included:

  • Zinc (29.7% of children in study)
  • Magnesium (17.6%)
  • Calcium (5.8%)

According to the study, the amount of children with autism with high burdens of metalloid species included:

  • Aluminum (17.2%)
  • Cadmium (8.5%)
  • Lead (4.8%)

With studies like the metallomics study and the research featured in The Age of Aluminum, it’s evident that aluminum and other toxic metalloid species have a negative impact on human health.  This impact comes in the form of neurodevelopmental disorders – which range from autism to Alzheimer’s.

Further study of aluminum’s toxicity and the extent to which exposures lead to ill health is an important research focus of CMSRI. CMSRI’s strategic research agenda is likely to yield important new insights into major instigators of these increasingly prevalent diseases so that preventative strategies, treatments, and cures will more quickly follow.

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