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BioMed Research International
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 729349, 11 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2013/729349
Research Article

Antibodies against Food Antigens in Patients with Autistic Spectrum Disorders

1CIRANAD, Second University of Naples, via Pansini 5, Building 3, 80131 Naples, Italy
2“Alimenti e Salute” PhD School, CIRANAD, Second University of Naples, via Pansini 5, Building 3, 80131 Naples, Italy
3Department of Experimental Medicine, Second University of Naples and Centre for Autism, La Forza del Silenzio, via S. Maria di Costantinopoli 16, 80138 Naples, Italy
4Department of Mental and Physical Health and Preventive Medicine, Second University of Naples, Largo Madonna delle Grazie 1, 80138 Naples, Italy
5Department of General Pathology, Second University of Naples, Larghetto S. Aniello a Caponapoli 2, 80138 Naples, Italy
6Center for Celiac Research and Mucosal Immunology and Biology Research Center, Massachusetts General Hospital East, Charlestown, MA 02129-4404, USA
7Department of Experimental Medicine, Second University of Naples, via S. Maria di Costantinopoli 16, 80138 Naples, Italy
8UOC Clinical and Molecular Pathology, Second University of Naples, via S. Maria di Costantinopoli 16, 80138 Naples, Italy
9Department of Psychiatry, University of Catanzaro “Magna Graecia”, via T. Campanella, 88100 Catanzaro, Italy
10Department of Woman, Children and of General and Specialistic Surgery, Second University of Naples, via L. De Crecchio 4, 80138 Naples, Italy
11Department of Medical Translational Science, University of Naples “ Federico II ”, via Pansini 5, 80131 Naples, Italy

Received 21 April 2013; Revised 18 June 2013; Accepted 27 June 2013

Academic Editor: David Bernardo

Copyright © 2013 Laura de Magistris et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Purpose. Immune system of some autistic patients could be abnormally triggered by gluten/casein assumption. The prevalence of antibodies to gliadin and milk proteins in autistic children with paired/impaired intestinal permeability and under dietary regimen either regular or restricted is reported. Methods. 162 ASDs and 44 healthy children were investigated for intestinal permeability, tissue-transglutaminase (tTG), anti-endomysium antibodies (EMA)-IgA, and total mucosal IgA to exclude celiac disease; HLA-DQ2/-DQ8 haplotypes; total systemic antibodies (IgA, IgG, and IgE); specific systemic antibodies: α-gliadin (AGA-IgA and IgG), deamidated–gliadin-peptide (DGP-IgA and IgG), total specific gliadin IgG (all fractions: α, β, γ, and ω), β-lactoglobulin IgG, α-lactalbumin IgG, casein IgG; and milk IgE, casein IgE, gluten IgE, -lactoglobulin IgE, and α-lactalbumin IgE. Results. AGA-IgG and DPG-IgG titers resulted to be higher in ASDs compared to controls and are only partially influenced by diet regimen. Casein IgG titers resulted to be more frequently and significantly higher in ASDs than in controls. Intestinal permeability was increased in 25.6% of ASDs compared to 2.3% of healthy children. Systemic antibodies production was not influenced by paired/impaired intestinal permeability. Conclusions. Immune system of a subgroup of ASDs is triggered by gluten and casein; this could be related either to AGA, DPG, and Casein IgG elevated production or to impaired intestinal barrier function.