Autism could be a leading cause for human extinction in the next hundred years
Humans evolved six million years ago
The thing that does not happen for millions of years occurred in the last 40 years
Incidence of autism is 1 in 10000 in 1980, 1 in 54 in 2020
Is autism a deleterious condition in evolution?
Do you know how life evolves on earth?
Evolution happens at the gene level, i.e., gene mutation and expression patterns etc.
Do you know what the driving force of this evolution is?
The Environment is the driving force for evolution, i.e., life tries to adapt to Environment through gene modifications like gene mutations and gene expression patterns
Successful gene mutations and expression patterns sustain, and rest perish.
Why is autism a deleterious condition in evolution?
Everybody knows about autism as a brain development disorder because that is the most prominent manifestation
What is less known – Autism is an epigenetic disorder that affects all systems in the human body
Around five thousand biological processes in the human body are affected, the gross epigenetic errors are the route cause for this
During brain development, gross epigenetic errors result in disordered development
Do you know what epigenetics is?
Epigenetics is the central dogma of life
Every protein is formed from genes. Every biological process in the human body needs protein synthesis from genes
Life on earth exhibit a complex web of biological processes. This complexity increases with evolution
Every life on earth tries to modify the complex web of biological processes to survive the Environment
The study of all these mechanisms is epigenetics
In autism, around 584 genes are undergoing overexpression, 558 genes undergoing reduced expression, and 833 genes produce isoforms through a process called differential alternative splicing events during brain development, five thousand plus genes show similar abnormal expressions in other parts of the body in autism
These gross epigenetic errors point towards a significant change in Environment that the human body is unable to perform its complex web of biological processes without interruption and becoming defective and hence going deleterious in evolution
Do you know about the primary mechanism affected in the autistic brain due to these gross epigenetic errors?
1) Neuronal migration – result in Heterotopia
2) Neuronal Differentiation – result in multifocal dysplasia
3) Accelerated neurogenesis – result in subependymal nodular dysplasia
4) Microglial inactivation – failure of functional circuitry formation
In other body parts, five thousand biological processes include immune pathways, detox pathways, hormones, enzymes, and many other essential mechanisms, etc.
What causes these epigenetic errors in autism?
Around eighty thousand industrial chemicals are registered in environmental protection agency, and only four thousand are labelled toxic, every year 2500 plus chemicals are being added in the market in about six million products we are using daily, many of these resists human metabolism and accumulate in the human body
Pollution, plastic usage, pesticides, and food adulteration are significant sources of changes in the Environment
The environmental working group and Rachel network identified 232 toxins in human cord blood, which means the babies are developing in a toxic bath. Most of these toxins are microplastics, bisphenol A, pesticides etc.
This toxic Environment is triggering the gross epigenetic errors in autism
N-acetyl cysteine in the antenatal program may reduce autism incidence- NAC is a glutathione precursor, which will help remove toxins, thus creating a toxin-free Environment for developing fetuses.
Know about how these toxins create a havoc
Sometimes the toxins directly interrupt biological processes
Another important mechanism in man microbe relation disruption. To know this, try to understand holobiont theory or hologenome theory
Man, microbe relation starts right from the womb
Certain human species-specific groups of microbes reside in the highly dynamic Environment of the human uterus
These are the ones that first colonize in a baby’s intestines and help in immune priming, and allow the development of a human-compatible ecosystem
A uterine microbiome lineage, specifical micrococcus luteus dominant fetal intestines, showed healthy epigenetics and distinct T cell response
In autism, there is a presence of phylogenetically different ecosystems in which uterine microbiome lineage is unable to survive
This phylogenetically different ecosystem is the reason for disordered epigenetics in autism
What can be done?
Eradicate the phylogenetically different ecosystem and facilitate colonization of human-compatible ecosystem
How to do this? Does faecal microbiota transfer help?
What will you achieve by doing this?
Can a long course of FMT eradicate the pathogenic ecosystem and facilitate colonization of a healthy ecosystem?
Is the uterine microbiome and lineage colonization after FMT an indicator of the success of FMT in autism?
How can we assess epigenetic changes after FMT? – a list of genes in blood of autistic individuals produces splice variants. Epigenetic studies before and after FMT may reveal changes in this splice variant formation.