Please note: The content of this post is my own, unless the technical terms is too hard to explain, then the content is copy and pasted. I am not a medical professional and thus the post is my point of view. But the content is science-based and credible. Just because it is a new science, does not necessarily make it quackery.
Production of Folinic Acid, Serine and Glycine:
As the folic acid comes into the body through food, it is converted into DHF/R (dihydrofolic acid). It interacts with bacteria during cell division. From there it converts to tetrahydrofolic acid (THF) through Dihydrofolate reductase (DHFR). During the process of converting from THF to 5,10-CH2THF (5-formyl-THF/ Folinic acid), serine and glycine is created. It is further converted to 5CH3THF.
This cycle is called the Folate or Folic acid cycle (THF – 5,10-CH2THF – 5ch3THF), breaking down folic acid to create folate and folinic acid which is better absorbed by the body and less harmful than the folic acid. Yes, folic acid is recommended to most pregnant women to help with the development of the baby, but if the person taking the supplement has a methylation problem, the folic acid does more harm than good. If possible and readily available folate or folinic acid should be taken. Alternatively, more dark green leafy vegetables should be consumed.
Remember this picture?
The process of forming folic acid into the Folinic Acid is the “Organic farming” cycle of the picture. Also in that process is the Thymidylate Synthase, which goes from dUMP to dTMP to create DNA. For this cycle to happen DHF/R has to be present – which is at the beginning of the Folic acid cycle. The Thymidylate Synthase tries to keep the dUMP and dTMP low to prevent damage to DNA.
Then to get to the COMT results you have to move on the BH4 Cycle…
BH4: Better Health 4 Life cycle
This cycle is responsible for creating the 5 neurotransmitters which scientist say is, not missing, but very low in production in Autistic people: Serotonin, Dopamine, Epinephrine, Nor-epinephrine and Melatonin.
BH4 is MTHFR A1298C.
And basically BH4 is where your emotions and sleep are influenced.
The BH4 (Tetrahydrobiopterin) cycle is used by the Urea cycle to clean up toxic ammonia and generates nitric oxide, an element that keeps blood vessels open and free of plaque.
BH4 has 2 “janitors” – MAO A (cleans up serotonin) and COMT (cleans up Dopamine and Nor-epinephrine). Because this cycle works with serotonin, dopamin and epinephrine, they would also be more involve with mood disorders.
Lets look at Alex’s COMT results:
Though there was no impact on his MTHFR A1298C, …
… his COMT was heavily impacted
This whole cycle needs Vit B6 to function. Currently Alex is taken p5p for his low B6.