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Keywords:

  • immunology;
  • anti-transglutaminase antibody;
  • pediatrics

Abstract

We report that a significant number of autistic children have serum levels of IgA antibodies above normal to the enzyme tissue transglutaminase II (TG2), and that expression of these antibodies to TG2 is linked to the (HLA)-DR3, DQ2 and DR7, DQ2 haplotypes. TG2 is expressed in the brain, where it has been shown to be important in cell adhesion and synaptic stabilization. Thus, these children appear to constitute a subpopulation of autistic children who fall within the autism disease spectrum, and for whom autoimmunity may represent a significant etiological component of their autism. Autism Res2011,4:242–249. © 2011 International Society for Autism Research, Wiley Periodicals, Inc.