for people ages 5-22 (full criteria)
study started
estimated completion:
Robert Hendren



This is an open-label, 4-month study examining the effects of Sulforaphane (SF) on behavior in children with ASD and the correlation between behavior change and urinary metabolites. The goal is to determine a potential mechanism of action of SF in this population.

Official Title

An Examination of Changes in Urinary Metabolites With Use of an Antioxidant Supplement, Sulforaphane, in School-aged Children With Autism


Sulforaphane (SF) is an isothiocyanate found in high levels in crucifers belonging to the family Brassicaceae (including broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, brussels sprouts, Chinese cabbage and turnips). Many previous studies have documented that consumption of these vegetables is associated with a reduced risk of cancer (lung, breast, colon, rectum, and prostate).(Juge et al. 2007) The mechanism of action of these beneficial effects is believed to be due to the ability of SF to up-regulate genes that improve cellular response to oxidative stress, inflammation, DNA-damaging electrophiles, and radiation.(Singh et al. 2014) In a recent small, randomized controlled trial in children with autism, SF was shown to have beneficial effects on aberrant and social behavior.(Singh et al. 2014) The mechanism of action of this beneficial effect has not been established in children with ASD. Our primary goal is to examine changes in urinary metabolites in children with autism who receive SF to determine if changes in behavior are associated with changes in urinary metabolites.


Autism Autistic Disorder Sulforafan Sulforaphane


You can join if…

Open to people ages 5-22

  • Male or female, enrolled at OHS, age 6-22 and with a diagnosis of ASD.
  • ASD diagnosis will be established by standard criteria (DSM-IV criteria and expert clinician review of medical records and child observation).
  • Written informed consent obtained from the subject's legal representative and ability for subject to comply with the requirements of the study.

You CAN'T join if...

  • Presence of a condition or abnormality that in the opinion of the Investigator would compromise the safety of the patient or the quality of the data.


accepting new patients by invitation only
Start Date
Completion Date
University of California, San Francisco
Phase 2
Lead Scientist
Robert Hendren
Study Type
Last Updated
October 2016