This is such a great segment on zinc/copper balance in pyroluria and autism so I really want to share it in advance of Dr. Usman’s interview tomorrow Friday January 15th. Dr. Usman one of many excellent speakers on the Autism Intensive.
An excerpt from Dr. Usman’s interview: Optimizing Metabolic-Immune Communication and Function, on the Autism intensive
Dr. Usman: …. In the 70s, they were breaking down individuals with schizophrenia into three phenotypes: low histamine, high histamine and pyrolurics. At the time this phenotype of pyroluria in schizophrenia was manifest as a B6, zinc deficiency and when they were given high doses of B6 or zinc, their schizophrenia improved.
Dr. Schwartz: So that was kind of your first exposure to nutritional vitamins.
Dr. Usman: Yeah. I was treating patients with depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, mental illness with these various protocols that Carl Pfeiffer had developed. I started doing research in copper/zinc imbalances. We had over 500 patients with autism involved in a study that we look at there. We look at plasma zinc and serum copper ratios. When you ratio plasma zinc to serum copper what you’re looking for is a ratio of 1 to 1.
Dr. Schwartz: Balance is more important than the absolute number.
Dr. Usman: Correct.
Dr. Schwartz: Another concept that takes us outside the traditional lab values?
Dr. Usman: Exactly. You’re not looking at a lab number, but you’re looking at a ratio.
Dr. Schwartz: So both zinc and copper could be in the normal range, but the ratio can be way off. That’s something I’ve certainly seen in my patients.
Dr. Usman: Correct. When the ratio of copper and zinc is off, we want that ratio to be one-to-one. And patients with inflammatory issues and patients with various autoimmune issues and sick patients in general, their ratio ends up being disturbed. We found out in the autistic population was that 99% of them, which is a very low P value in statistics.
Dr. Schwartz: Zero, zero, zero, zero.
Dr. Usman: Zero, zero, zero, zero. 99% of them had low zinc, high copper and they had a high ratio of copper to zinc – of over 1.2.
Dr. Schwartz: So very dramatic.
Dr. Usman: Yeah. Then Dr. Walsh, who headed the Pfeiffer treatment center, had a theory that this was due to defect in a protein called metallothionein. Metallothionein is a protein that, in a way, transports copper and zinc through the body.
If you enjoyed this and would like to hear Dr. Usman’s complete interview, it airs as part of the Autism Intensive on Friday January 15th. Her talk is titled: Optimizing Metabolic-Immune Communication and Function.
You can register to get access to this and all the speakers here https://mutzelnutrition.isrefer.com/go/1129/trudyscottcn