Have you ever noticed that people with methylation issues are usually very smart? It has a lot to do with having difficulty breaking down neurotransmitters. Having SNPs is not always a curse; it can bless you with attributes as well. COMT is a definitely contender for such a double-edged sword. It can keep dopamine and epinephrine/adrenalin in the synapse longer. People with these genetics might do well with memory and focus, but if you stress them too much, the end up with way too much dopamine/adrenalin being released. This excess catecholamine condition can lead to mania, schizoid behavior, paranoia, anxiety, to name but a few. This video will show you why too much catecholamines can really mess up your brain, give you fog, pain, poor memory and all sorts of digestive and pain syndromes. Yes, when the brain is sick our whole body is sick!

As we know COMT and MAO enzymes are critical parts of our biochemistry and our methylation cycle. In the brain, COMT is mainly responsible for breaking down catecholamine neurotransmitters dopamine and adrenalin (epinephrine). COMT is also used in the breakdown of estrogen in the liver. This makes COMT a key player both inside and outside the brain since estrogen levels can impact many things including cancer, hormone symptoms, and stroke – but we’ll get to that next time. Listen to Dr. Rostenberg explain the significance of COMT and MAO polymorphisms on our brain function. In this video he illustrates how dopamine and epinephrine (adrenalin) are processed inside the brain. If the body gets this pathway balanced, we feel positive and calm, have focus and energy, and sleep through the night. If the body doesn’t balance this pathway, all sorts of health problems can result such as chronic fatigue, insomnia, depression, Parkinson’s Disease, and a host of other neurological problems. Remember that one gene doesn’t determine your fate. Understanding COMT is a key part of understanding methylation because this enzyme impacts both our hormones and our neurotransmitters. If you would like help with your methylation genetics to heal your neurotransmitters and/or hormones, please contact Dr. Rostenberg at Red Mountain Natural Medicine today. Phone 208-322-7755. Email redmountainclinic@gmail.com.


  • May 5, 2014 Reply


    Very informative – thank you.

    My 5yo is homozygous for both and has had rages / anger and anxiety for 2 years. She had streptoccus overgrowth in her gut and was diagnosed with p.a.n.d.a.s but after seeing this it makes me wonder if all the symptoms relate to a poorerhylation pathway – any ideas how thr two interplay?

    • May 6, 2014 Reply


      Rage and anger = low neurotransmitters (excess MAO Fxn). Anxiety = high neurotransmitters (slow COMT). Methylation increases COMT efficiency. St. John’s Wort slows down MAO activity. Work with someone who understands methylation and gut health…and she’ll be better! Dr. Rostenberg

  • September 26, 2014 Reply


    in this video, you mentionnned that MAO snp is equivalent to high activity fo the enzyme but elsewhere you have said that MAO snp means slower activity of the enzyme..
    kindly explain:I’m Mao-A r297r +

    • September 26, 2014 Reply


      You are right that in the video I say that MAO-A is sped up. This is in fact only true for people with a GREEN SNP for MAO-A R297R rs6323. It is not correct for people with a YELLOW (+/-) or RED (+/+) in the MAO-A R297R rs6323 category. On the MTHFRSupport.com variant report (the most common one used in the USA) GREEN means you have the MAO-A which is FAST. If you have a yellow or a red your MAO-A is going SLOW. I realize this gets confusing but I hope this explanation sheds some light on the issue. MAO-A is going SLOWER if it is YELLOW or RED. MAO-A is going FASTER if it is GREEN. Hope that helps. – Dr. Rostenberg

  • March 20, 2016 Reply

    Dr Ellen Grant

    We have been measuring zinc and copper levels in patients since the 1970s as zinc deficiency with high copper levels and low copper stores, and decreased superoxide dismutase activities are more likely in women taking hormonal contraceptives or menopausal hormones. My review lectures are at http://www.harmfromhormones.co.uk. We discovered in the 1960s that progestins increase monoamine oxidase activities and cause matching increases in depression and loss of libido. Red blood cell COMT levels were more likely to be higher or lower than normal in women taking hormones than in non users among migraine patients.. Zinc and magnesium deficiencies are the commonest findings in patients with a wide range of conditions..

    • March 21, 2016 Reply


      Dear Dr. Grant,

      Thank you for your feedback! You are pointing out some great research. It is amazing how the hormones tie together a lot of the “WHY” behind all the symptoms men and women experience. Zinc and magnesium deficiency are arguably the most common nutritional deficiency in the world, perhaps eclipsing even iron deficiency anemia.

      Yours in Health,

      Dr. Rostenberg

  • October 31, 2017 Reply

    Jodi Day

    HELP! I am on a wild goose chase and my brain is spinning! My son has been on a health journey for two years now. We recently doscovered MTHFR as a possibility based on some tests that were done.

    My question. What is my first step in deciphering all of his genetics information. Should he have genetic testing and where donI go for that.

    He is 20 and has low testosterone, low Zinc, low Magnesium. He is being treated for Candida overgrowth. His biggest issue has been loss of mental capabilities. He has brain fog severely, as he calls it, mental lethargy. He has struggled with sleep for years now. It has turned into a viscous cycle. He is highly intelligent, but can no longer process information or recall what he reads.

    I want to send him someplace to heal and figure this out. He has voiced that he would like to go to California to be euthanized.

    • November 9, 2017 Reply

      Dr. Rostenberg

      Hi Jodi,

      Thanks for your comment. It sounds like your son is really in need of some help. Many of his symptoms are related to problems with methylation, including digestion, neurotransmitters, and detoxification. The best way to get his genetic information decoded and understood is through a consultation with our office. We recommend the proper testing for you (23andme and AncestryDNA, Organic Acid Testing, Blood Labs, etc.) and then help you understand the root causes. Then we provide a personalized natural medicine protocol using food, supplements, and lifestyle modification to support higher levels of health and function. We read and interpret genetic reports every day and work with people over phone and Skype from all over the world. Contact our office directly care@redmountainclinic.com and 208-322-7755 to get him started!

      In Health,

      Dr. Rostenberg

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