Science Library Category:

Urinary Porphyrins

Altered urinary porphyrins and mercury exposure as biomarkers for autism severity in Egyptian children with autism spectrum disorder
Published: 2016

Children with ASD have higher urinary levels of mercury and lead.


Khaled EM, Meguid NA, Bjørklund G, et al. Metabolic Brain Disease 2016. DOI 10.1007/s11011-016-9870-6.


Results of this case-control study showed that children with ASD had higher urinary levels of mercury and lead as well as porphyrins that are characteristic of mercury toxicity as compared to non-ASD control children. Porphyrins are complex molecules that are processed in the body through a series of chemical reactions. Mercury poisons the enzymes that are needed in the process, causing a buildup in the body of excess levels of specific porphyrins. The porphyrins for mercury toxicity also correlated with autism severity in ASD patients.

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