Minocycline is a promising treatment for autism because of many reasons. It has already got positive results in fragile x cases and is being tested in autism because of its neuroprotective qualities as well as it strong anti inflammatory action on the brain, and elsewhere.
It is a weak broad spectrum antibiotic which is used generally in the treatment of acne and is supposed to have a positive effect in mild RA.
“As an anti-inflammatory, minocycline inhibits apoptosis (cell death) via attenuation of TNF-alpha, downregulating pro-inflammatory cytokine output. This effect is mediated by a direct action of minocycline on the activated T cells and on microglia, which results in the decreased ability of T cells to contact microglia which impairs cytokine production in T cell-microglia signal transduction . Minocycline also inhibits microglial activation, through blockade of NF-kappa B nuclear translocation.”(wiki)
Here are a couple of important recent articles/studies on minocycline:
production in T cell-microglia interaction
Our trial with minocycline continues since we have not seen any adverse effects beyond impaired balance of intestinal pathogens. Many families have had to abandon use of this medicine because of skin and teeth discoloration etc.
This medicine is inhibited by iron,zinc and calcium supplementation and should not be taken within two hours of these nutrients.
We started seeing beneficial effects after about 6 weeks of being on the drug which included increase speech usage and reduction in hyperactivity.
Impairment in gut environment also happened within a couple of weeks, specifically clostridia type overgrowth; which resolves only with heavy daily probiotic supplementation i.e. we are ok on the days that we drink atleast 300-500 ml of coconut kefir. The good part about this was that the behaviors normally associated with these infections(aggression, screaming, destructiveness, impulsivity) did not manifest themselves – leading one to hypothesize that perhaps reduced inflammation in the gut was leading less leakage of toxins through the intestinal walls.
However the improvements due to minocycline appear to have tapered off and since we are now using classical homeopathy, minocycline is on our list of supplements to wean. Planning to do this after having a sleep EEG done, in consultation with both our DAN and homeopath