Routine Testing Confirms Elevated Male Hormones in Autism

Release Contacts:
For Immediate Release CoMeD President [Rev. Lisa K. Sykes (Richmond, VA) 804-364-8426]

November 28, 2007 CoMeD Sci. Advisor [Dr. King (Lake Hiawatha, NJ) 973-263-4843]

WASHINGTON, DC – A new moderate-scale peer-reviewed scientific/medical study confirms many patients with an autistic spectrum disorder (ASD) suffer from significantly elevated levels of male hormones, and numerous treatments that lower male-hormone levels have significantly improved clinical outcomes in patients with an ASD.

This study, “A Prospective Assessment of Androgen Levels in Patients with Autistic Spectrum Disorders: Biochemical Underpinnings and Suggested Therapies,” by Mr. David A. Geier and Dr. Mark R. Geier, has been published in the most recent issue of Neuroendocrinology Letters (Volume 28, Issue 5, pgs. 565-573). A grant from the Brenen Hornstein Autism Research & Education (BHARE) Foundation (Elk Grove, IL) to the Institute of Chronic Illnesses, Inc. (Silver Spring, MD) funded this research.

Previous studies by Tordjman et al. (1997) and Geier and Geier (2006) have suggested patients with an ASD have elevated levels of male hormones. The male hormones tested in the Geier and Geier (2007) study were: testosterone, dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA), and androstenedione.

This study utilized blood testing to assess the level of these male hormones in patients diagnosed with an ASD. The researchers examined 70 patients diagnosed with an ASD who were subsequently found to have elevated male-hormone levels by the CLIA-approved US Laboratory Corporation of America (LabCorp).

The findings by Geier and Geier demonstrate:

• Patients with an ASD had significantly increased levels of serum testosterone, serum free testosterone, percent free testosterone, DHEA, and androstenedione relative to LabCorp’s age- and sex-specific reference range means.

• Female patients with an ASD diagnosis had significantly higher relative testosterone and free testosterone levels than the male patients.
• Elevations in male hormone levels may result from environmental exposures, such as mercury, and increase the toxicity of the exposure.

The results of the present study confirm and extend previous observations, establishing the clinical importance of elevated male-hormone levels in those diagnosed with an ASD. Also, this paper’s findings are consistent with those observed by many others who treat similar patients.

The researchers also found that administration of a male-hormone-reducing drug (leuprolide acetate, LUPRON®) to nearly 200 patients diagnosed with an ASD resulted in significantly lowered male-hormone levels and corresponding clinically significant reductions in hyperactivity / impulsivity, stereotypy, aggression, self injury, abnormal sexual behaviors, and/or irritability behaviors that frequently occur in patients with an ASD, with few non-responders and minimal adverse effects from the therapy.

Thus, hormone testing is being successfully used to:

• Demonstrate the role of elevated male hormones in populations with an ASD,
• Clinically identify children and adults who have elevated male hormones, and
• Track male hormone levels from affected patients undergoing treatment to lower male hormones.

Today, any parent, physician, or healthcare provider can easily confirm whether a patient diagnosed with an ASD has elevated male hormones through testing done at LabCorp.

Among other articles, the CoMeD’s website,, contains full copies of the 2006 and 2007 papers authored by David A. Geier and Mark R. Geier.

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