Innate/adaptive immune responses and transcript profiles of peripheral blood monocytes were studied in ASD children who exhibit fluctuating behavioral symptoms following infection and other immune insults (ASD/Inf, N=30). The ASD/Inf children with persistent gastrointestinal symptoms (ASD/Inf+GI, N=19), revealed less production of proinflammatory and counter-regulatory cytokines with stimuli of innate immunity and marked changes in transcript profiles of monocytes as compared to ASD/no-Inf (N=28) and normal (N=26) controls. This included a 4-5 fold up-regulation of chemokines (CCL2 and CCL7), consistent with the production of more CCL2 by ASD/Inf+GI cells. These results indicate dysregulated innate immune defense in the ASD/Inf+GI children, rendering them more vulnerable to common microbial infection/dysbiosis and possibly subsequent behavioral changes.
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