Sensory hypersensitivity is reported in ~95% of autistic individuals and anxiety is reported in ~30% of autistic individuals. Theories have proposed that this sensory hypersensitivity and anxiety may be driven by an imbalance between neurotransmitters called GABA and glutamate. Here we want to see if by giving high doses of vitamin B6, a water-soluble vitamin, we can have an impact on sensory reactivity, anxiety and/or depression. In previous research, we have demonstrated that vitamin B6 affects sensory hypersensitivity and anxiety in non-autistic people, and we would like to see if this can also be shown in autistic individuals. The study involves a series of questionnaires, visual perception tasks (e.g. you have to look at a computer screen and tell us what you see), and a blood test before and after a 30-day intervention of vitamin B6 or a placebo. You will be asked to complete questionnaires asking about your mood, diet, and lifestyle before then being asked to complete a series of visual perception tasks. These visual perception tasks will involve reporting which circle presented to you appears bigger and the direction of lines inside of circles. Finally, we will collect a blood sample from you using a novel technique that has been shown to be virtually painless in autistic and non-autistic adults (called TAP-II devices). You will then be asked to return and complete these tasks after 30 days of taking tablets. For more information, please read the information sheet included here.
You can take part in this study if:
  • You have received a diagnosis of autism
  • You are 18-60 years old
You cannot take part in this study if:
  • You are taking, or have recently taken, any multivitamin or supplement that contains more than 2 mg of Vitamin B6
  • You are taking drugs that are known GABA agonists, such as Arbaclofen
  • You have a history of peripheral neuropathy
  • You have taken or are currently taking the antibiotic cycloserine
For more information, please contact Alex Cameron (