We examined Dohan's htypothesis that Schizophrenia and childhood autism are due to the absorption of "exorphins" contained in gluten and casein. We found both diseases are associated with hyperpolypeptiduria with similar peptide patterns upon Sephadex separation. When material from Sephadex separation of urine peptides was separated further by high pressure liquid chromatography, large amounts of gliadorphin and beta-casomorphin-7 were found. Immuneglobulin studies in schizophrenics showed 86% had IgA antibodies to gluten and 67% to casein. Among autistics 30% had IgA antibodies to gluten and casein. High titer IgG antibodies to gluten were found in 87% of autistic and 86% of schizophrenic patients and IgG antibodies to casein were found in 90% of autistic and in 93% of schizophrenics. When schizophrenic patients were treated with dialysis or a gluten-casein free diet, peptiduria decreased and symptoms ameliorated. A gluten-casein free diet was accompanied by improvement in 81% of autistic children within 3 months. Our data provide support for the proposal that schizophrenia and autism are due to absorption of exorphins formed in the intestine from digestion of gluten and casein.
In the Results section, Dr. Cade reports an unanticipated result, in that "four mothers volunteered that their autistic children had frequent grandmal seizures before beginning a gluten-casein free diet. Seizure frequency decreased dignificantly in three, and in the other ceased."