Warning- The articles and quotes used in this blog are not mine nor do I claim them to be. They are the property of The Daily Telegraph and ScienceAlert.
Today, we discuss a new story that claims a slight breakthrough when it comes to dousing the effects of Autism and improving communication and social skills in people with Autism. Suramin has been used in the past to fight ‘African sleeping sickness’ or ‘trypansomiasis’ and according to various articles, if taken by anyone with Autism can improve in language and interaction and whereas I might not fully agree with this…it sounds a mile better compared to that stupid bleach on the brain one that was circling the internet in the past.
“Suramin works by removing negative signals that block or slow natural child development. It is more like removing the brakes than pressing the accelerator,”- Prof Naviaux
This drug apparently shuts off the negative signals in the brain but doesn’t last forever…about six weeks according to the article. Would people be willing to have children take this drug if it could reduce “associated with improved scores for language, social interaction, and decreased restricted or repetitive behaviors?”.
Professor Naviaux also claims that a possible cause of Autism is metabolic dysfunction
A metabolic disorder can happen when abnormal chemical reactions in the body alter the normal metabolic process. It can also be defined as inherited single gene anomaly, most of which are autosomal recessive. Google
Whether this is true or just another thing to add to the long list of things claimed to cause Autism remains to be seen but time will only tell.
Are taking drugs like this the right way to go? Personally, it depends as far as I’m concerned because not all drugs are bad but many people might feel that they shouldn’t have to resort to using a drug to resolve what they might not see as an issue but when it comes to Autism, it’s not always how we see it, it can be how others perceive it and if I have learnt anything in this life, it’s that many are judged for how they interact with others.
Let’s face it, people who are known for being anti social and quiet are not always looked upon with huge favour in this life, after all…wouldn’t we all have more friends if we were? If I didn’t find the courage to speak to as many people as I have during my college and University years, I probably wouldn’t have any friends because I wouldn’t have spoken much and would have always been alone, sat in my room all day feeling sorry for myself.
For children who struggle to communicate or make friends, something like this does sound like a god send, even if it’s temporary unless I assume they have another dose but is it right? And the elephant in the room has to be side effects which include
- Skin tingling
As far as I’m aware, you can’t just go out and purchase this stuff or get it from your GP but if it was proven to be beneficial and safe, who knows. I assume more experiments in the future will happen and if successful…perhaps the drug will become available to the public, whether anyone with Autism would chose to use it is another matter. Some probably would and some won’t. It’s too early to use this as a ‘treatment’ as some will eventually call it if it is successful
“Suramin is not approved for the treatment of autism. Like many intravenous drugs, when administered improperly by untrained personnel, at the wrong dose and schedule, without careful measurement of drug levels and monitoring for toxicity, suramin can cause harm”.