Friday, August 22, 2014

A Question

I'm in the beginning stages of learning biochemistry and neurochemistry so I'm not completely sure I'm interpreting this correctly.  If I am guessing correctly, then I just pulled on the right string in this huge knotball of an illness.

In the video (I posted yesterday) the modeler discovered that CFS/ME patients were all deficient in Phenylalanine.  Of course I had to look this up on Wikipedia:

Two things jumped out at me:
1) If people can't metabolize pheylalamine, they have to monitor protein intake to make sure they don't eat too much.
2) Pheylalamine is involved in neural glutamate receptor binding/activation.

If I'm reading into this correctly it explains two things to me:
1) CFS patients have too little pheylalamine rather than too much.  My craving and eating large amoutns of protein might help build up pheylalamine levels in my system since it is deficient.  I always feel better after eating a heavy protein meal.  Light meals even with small amounts of protein just don't cut it.  I feel lousy later and need to eat again much sooner than normal for me.
2) The phelalamine deficiency might be the origin of the glutamate/GABA imbalance in the brain.  Makes me wonder if the same underlying mechanism exists in autism.  The supplement protocol I'm following was originally designed for autistic patients who also have a glutamate/GABA imbalance.  Maybe the trigger is different but the same treatment works for both.  No matter; it seems that the pheylalamine shortage might be the cause of excess glutamate in the brain.

Now take all of this with a grain of salt since I'm guessing here.  I could be totally wrong.  It is interesting none the less.  I'm looking forward to the treatments that Dr. Klimas and company come up with if the pheylalamine model works out.

To be honest I looked up the Wiki article hoping that I could figure out which supplements I could take.  However, reading the article, it sounds too dicey.  It would be playing with brain chemistry in a big way based on an unproven chunk of science.  Mathematical models don't always work out the way we want when applied to real life.  I'm already making people nervous screwing around with genetic testing and taking supplements based on a doctor I found on the internet.  This would be too cutting edge even for me.

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