Archive for the ‘research’ Category

Coronavirus: Pathogen Could Have Been Spreading in Humans For Years, Study Says

Coronavirus: pathogen could have been spreading in humans for years, study says

Stephen Chen in Beijing

  • Virus may have jumped from animal to humans long before the first detection in Wuhan, according to research by an international team of scientists
  • Findings significantly reduce the possibility of the virus having a laboratory origin, director of the US National Institute of Health says (See link for article)



Important quote:

The study, found here: is also a topic of Lyme advocate Carl Tuttle’s recent post titled, “The proximal origin of SARS-CoV-2”:

Tuttle’s focus is on an article debunking the Nature article claiming COVID-19 definitely wasn’t from a lab.  Article found here:  (You can also sign a petition in the link asking for a moratorium on all dual-use gain-of-function research.)

The author debunking the Nature article asserts COVID-19 either –

  • “spontaneously mutated and jumped to humans at a wet market or deep in some random bat cave which just so happened to be 20 miles from China’s only BSL-4 virology lab, a virus with an unusually slippery never-before-seen genome that’s evading zoological classification….”


  • “Chinese scientists failed to follow correct sanitation protocols…, something that had been anticipated since the opening of the BSL-4 lab and has happened at least four times previously, and accidentally released this bio-engineered Wuhan Strain – likely created by scientists researching immunotherapy regimes against bat coronaviruses, who’ve already demonstrated the ability to perform every step necessary to bio-engineer the Wuhan Strain COVID-19 – into their population, and now the world....this virus appears to have been bio-engineered at the spike-protein genes which was already done at UNC to make an extraordinarily virulent coronavirus. Chinese efforts to prevent the full story about what’s going on from getting out are because they want the scales to be even since they’re now facing a severe pandemic and depopulation event. No facts point against this conclusion.

Great video with Dr. Mikovitz explaining Coronavirus:  (She explains numerous issues raised in this article)

Circling back to the Nature article, one of the authors, Ian Lipkin, is known as “The Virus Hunter.”  He’s currently involved in a sex discrimination lawsuit alleging concerning issues that should cause us to question his credibility: (takes credit for others’ work, diverts and misuses funds which delays publication of others’ work, undermines relationships with a colleague’s collaborators and donors, wrongly adds himself as principle investigator to grants, and sex discrimination):  

Also, Lipkin, a staunch critic of Dr. Andrew Wakefield wrote this paper titled, “Anti-Vaccination Lunacy Won’t Stop”:

Any researcher biased enough to call those who dare to question vaccine safety lunatics has tipped his hand that he is not at all open to new scientific findings

Here, you can read an astute criticism of Lipkin’s CDC-AAP sponsored report, “Lack of Association between Measles Virus Vaccine and Autism with Enteropathy: A Case-Control Study,” and that it actually in the end validated Andrew Wakefield’s findings:

Please also remember that it was none other than NIH’s AIDS czar, Anthony Fauci, who asked his friend Ian Lipkin to settle the claim by microbiologist Judy Mikovitz on whether XMRV is behind chronic fatigue syndrome.  Lipkin blamed a man-made contaminant, despite Lo and Alter’s paper showing 6.8 percent of healthy controls were positive for MLV-related infection:

For the background

Similarly to how research for Alzheimer’s was hijacked for decades by the amyloid beta issue, ME/CHS research studying viruses was hijacked by Lipkin, despite this 2019 article stating that although XMRV has not been proven yet to cause CFS, it has not been ruled out, and that results of research shows that XMRV is a candidate for causing human disease: 

Lipkin is directly involved with research involving cancer, Autism, and vaccines – hot topics tightly controlled by powers that have vested interests.
Hopefully it is clear from the numerous posts on this website that those who depart from the controlled narrative are skewered alive.

But, Lipkin never departs from the accepted narrative.

Tuttle has a valid point not trusting authorities on COVID-19 that have also been involved in a

“thirty-year deception on the American public that Lyme is a simple nuisance disease through its network of paid academics (now defendants in a racketeering lawsuit) [2] how much trust should we lend to your work Dr. Lipkin?”

If you haven’t signed Tuttle’s petition, please do so:

There is continued resistance by government agencies to acknowledge and provide information pertaining to chronic Lyme disease on their websites and in their programs despite Lyme disease being around 45 years. They also control all testing and suppress any other lab doing Lyme/MSIDS testing.

Ocular Complications of Cat Scratch Disease

2020 Mar 2. pii: bjophthalmol-2019-315239. doi: 10.1136/bjophthalmol-2019-315239. [Epub ahead of print]

Ocular complications of cat scratch disease.


Cat scratch disease (CSD) in humans is caused by infection with Bartonella henselae or other Bartonella spp. The name of the disease reflects the fact that patients frequently have a history of contact (often involving bites or scratches) with infected cats. Patients with CSD typically develop lesions at the site where the skin is broken together with regional lymphadenopathy but may go on to exhibit systemic symptoms and with deep-seated infections at a range of sites including the eye. Patients with CSD may present with a range of inflammatory eye conditions, including Parinaud’s oculoglandular syndrome, neuroretinitis, multifocal retinitis, uveitis and retinal artery occlusion. Bartonella spp. are fastidious bacteria that are difficult to culture from clinical specimens so microbiological diagnosis is frequently made on the basis of positive serology for anti-Bartonella antibodies or detection of bacterial DNA by PCR. Due to the lack of clinical trials, the evidence base for optimal management of patients with CSD-associated eye infections (including the role of antibiotics) is weak, being derived from single reports or small, uncontrolled case series.



This study states what the rest of us all know – there is a lack of research on Bartonella yet it is everywhere:

And please know you don’t have to be exposed to cats to get it:

You also don’t have to be immunocompromised to get it:

Babesia Infections Explode In Hudson Valley, NY


man sick with babesia infection

Babesia, a parasitic infection usually transmitted through a tick bite, was once thought to be a coastal tick-borne disease limited to Suffolk County on Long Island. Some doctors had been reluctant to acknowledge that Babesia could be found in other locations. But in 2001, Babesia infections were reported in lower Hudson Valley, New York, a region north of Manhattan and has since continued to spread with an increase in the number of cases far beyond the borders of Long Island.

In their article “Increasing incidence and changing epidemiology of babesiosis in the Hudson Valley region of New York State: 2009-2016,” ¹ Joseph and colleagues question how cases of Babesia infections are spreading given that the animal reservoirs mice, shrews, and voles typically do not travel large distances.
Cases of Babesia have been reported in two counties located east of the Hudson River: Dutchess County and Westchester County, the authors write. (Westchester County alone has a population of nearly 1 million residents.)

Read More: Babesia remains a clinical diagnosis for some patients.

But since 2009, there has been an explosion of Babesia infections in the Upper Hudson Valley, New York region. This area consists of Albany County, Columbia County, Greene County, and Rensselaer County.

Over an 8-year period (between 2009-2016), there was a 16.8-fold increase in the incidence of Babesia cases in the Upper Hudson Valley region.

The number of Babesia cases explodes in the upper Hudson Valley, NY region. CLICK TO TWEET

The number of cases also increased in the Lower Hudson Valley region, which consists of Dutchess County, Putnam County, Westchester County, Orange County, Rockland County, Sullivan County, and Ulster County.

The actual number of Babesia cases is likely higher:

  1. It was not until 2011, that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) made Babesia a reportable disease. Between 2011 and 2016, New York State had a reported 2,750 cases of Babesia, the highest number in any state in the U.S.
  2. Babesia can be difficult to identify since the parasites in the red blood cells can quickly clear.
  3. Lastly, Babesia cases may not be recorded if the physician does not report the case to the CDC.

“In conclusion, babesiosis is a rapidly emerging infection in the Hudson Valley region of New York State, the geographic region now accounting for more cases than any other single geographic area in the state,” the authors write.

Therefore, “clinicians caring for patients with symptoms compatible with babesiosis, who live in or have traveled to the Hudson Valley region of New York State, should consider the possibility of babesiosis.”

Editor’s Note: I have practiced medicine in the Hudson Valley, New York region for more than 33 years. I have treated patients with Babesia infections for the past three decades. Many of the first patients first described with Babesia were caught early when Babesia microti was seen in the red blood cells. I typically diagnose cases of Babesia with a positive antibody test or using clinical judgment.

In addition, the authors addressed Babesia microti in their paper. I have seen evidence that Babesia duncani appears to be a problem in the area. Babesia duncani was first identified on the West Coast. We need more research on this tick-borne disease.

Lastly, the presence of Babesia has important treatment considerations. Neither doxycycline nor amoxicillin are effective in treating Babesia. Patients with Lyme disease, co-infected with Babesia, would need a combination of antimicrobials to include an anti-parasitic medication (i.e., azithromycin combined with Atovaquone).

Lyme Neuroborreliosis in Adults: A Nationwide Prospective Cohort Study

2020 Feb 24:101411. doi: 10.1016/j.ttbdis.2020.101411. [Epub ahead of print]

Lyme neuroborreliosis in adults: A nationwide prospective cohort study.


The goal of this paper is to characterize the clinical presentation, serological results, current antibiotic treatment practice, including compliance with current European guidelines, and outcome in adults with Lyme neuroborreliosis (LNB) diagnosed at departments of infectious diseases in Denmark. Using a nationwide prospective cohort of patients with central nervous system infections, we identified all adults (≥ 18 years of age) treated for LNB at departments of infectious diseases in Denmark from 2015 through 2017. The database contains information on baseline demographics, history of tick bite, erythema migrans, clinical presentation, laboratory results of blood samples, and cerebrospinal (CSF) biochemistry (e.g. specific Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato (s.l.) antibodies in serum, B. burgdorferi s.l. intrathecal antibody index) as well as antibiotic therapy. Outcome was assessed by the Glasgow Outcome Scale (GOS) and the presence of residual symptoms at follow-up one month after discharge. We included 194 LNB patients with a median age of 59 years (range 18-85 years, interquartile range [IQR] 47-69 years). The female-to-male ratio was 0.8. A total of 177 of 191 (93 %) of patients had early (second stage) LNB.

  • A history of tick bite or erythema migrans was registered in 75 (39%) and 49 (25%) patients, respectively.
  • The median duration of neurological symptoms before first hospital contact was 21 days (range 0-600 days, IQR 10-42 days).
  • Predominant symptoms consisted of radicular pain in 135 of 194 (70%), cranial nerve paresis in 88 of 194 (45%), headache in 71 of 185 (38%), and extremity paresis in 33 of 194 (17%) patients.
  • Serum-B. burgdorferi s.l. IgM and/or IgG antibodies were detectable in 166 of 181 (92%) patients at the time of first CSF investigation.
  • Median duration of antibiotic treatment was 14 days (range 10-35 days, IQR 14-21 days) and 59 (39%) of the patients received intravenous ceftriaxone and/or benzylpenicillin G throughout treatment.
  • At the 1-month follow-up, GOS was unfavorable (< 5) in 54 of 193 (28%) patients. An unfavorable GOS score was more often registered in patients with ≥ 45 days of symptom duration (20 of 45 (44 %) vs. 34 of 145 (23 %); P = 0.006).

In conclusion, a European cohort of adult patients with LNB diagnosed between 2015-2017 presented with classic symptoms and CSF findings. However, a substantial diagnostic delay was still observed.

In disagreement with current guidelines, a substantial part of LNB patients were treated with antibiotics longer than 14 days and/or intravenously as route of administration.



Please note that U.S. authorities and researchers continue to insist that 80% have the EM rash and base ALL research on that parameter, thereby missing a huge subset of patients:

The above Denmark study; however, found 25% had the rash which is similar to the first ever patient group: 1976circularletterpdf

The most common symptom (70% had it) was radiating spinal pain, a hallmark symptom of Lyme disease, followed by facial palsy, headache, and weakness in arms and legs.

Of import: diagnostic delays and the fact treatment was longer than the current IDSA guideline standard of 14 days.

The question begging to be asked of course is whether these patients had other infections besides Lyme:

Key Quote:  “Our findings recognize that microbial infections in patients suffering from TBDs do not follow the one microbe, one disease Germ Theory as 65% of the TBD patients produce immune responses to various microbes.”


Lyme Brain: The Science & The Experience

by Jennifer Crystal

At the 2019 International Lyme and Associated Diseases Society (ILADS) conference in Boston, infectious disease specialist Francine Hanberg, M.D. gave a talk about the causes and manifestations of “Lyme brain” called “Neuropathology in Patients With Late Lyme Disease and Post-Treatment Lyme Disease Symptoms: CNS Vasculitis, Hypoperfusion, Inflammation and Neuropathy.”  Since I had suffered from many of the symptoms associated with Lyme brain—such as short-term memory loss, confusion, brain fog, word repetition, and word loss— her talk caught my attention.

Dr. Hanberg focused on documenting the severity of tick-borne diseases through brain imaging and neurodiagnostic studies. I was struck by her study “Watershed Sign As a Marker for Late Lyme Neuroborreliosis.” “Watershed” areas of the brain, it turns out, simultaneously receive blood from different arteries, the way a creek might receive water from different outlets that eventually drain into a river.

In a previous post, I described Lyme-brain as a feeling of  “molasses seeping through your brain, pouring into all the crevices until your brain feels…[as if] it will explode.” Reviewing Dr. Hanberg’s slides, I could imagine exactly where my “molasses” was pouring—or, rather, I could see where the inflammation in those areas once made my own brain feel so heavy with pressure.

Because Lyme tends to affect watershed areas, cognitive impairments from the disease are usually broad-spectrum, rather than localized as with stroke. As described in the book Lyme Brain by Nicola McFadzean Ducharme, N.D., a study done by neuropsychologist Marian Rissenberg, Ph.D. and Susan Chambers, M.D. explains the major cognitive challenges of Lyme as affecting seven cognitive categories.[i]

I’ve outlined these categories below. For each, I will explain what the impairment definition is, what it felt like for me in my worst days, and what improvements I’ve seen with remission.

  1. Attention and mental tracking

What it means: An inability to focus on one task through to completion or to multi-task

What I experienced then: If I was talking with someone and there was noise in the background, I couldn’t follow what was being said. Moreover, if I was writing even something as simple as an email, I could not endure any background noise, whereas, when I was in college I’d written papers with music playing and people talking all around me. I could complete tasks, but everything took longer than before. I sometimes had difficulty concentrating on a single task; it was hard for me to finish watching a TV show or reading an article without wanting to stop and do something else.

What I experience now: It’s still difficult for me to concentrate with background noise, though light instrumental music is okay. I can follow conversations with far greater acuity, and I can watch and process full-length TV shows and read articles and books. I can scroll through social media and process all the different things I’m reading without hindrance, and stay focused on the task at hand.

  1. Memory

What it means: Difficulty processing and retrieving information; forgetfulness

What I experienced then: I often could not remember the answers to questions as basic as “What’s your zip code?” or “Who’s the President?” It would take me several minutes to come up with the answer.

What I experience now: Sometimes it still takes me a moment to remember what I had for breakfast, but only when I’m overtired. The same is true for repeating conversations (telling a friend the same thing twice); I also have to remember that I’m getting older, too!). On the whole, I can process and retrieve information fast enough to navigate a busy city, give a lecture or facilitate conversation in my classroom. My long-term memory thankfully remains razor-sharp.

  1. Receptive language

What it means: Difficulty understanding written and spoken language; losing track of conversations, not being able to process ideas quickly enough to comprehend or respond in a timely fashion; difficulty reading

What I experienced then: There was a point when I could only process short emails and couldn’t even read a full magazine article. The words would blur in front of my eyes and I would read sentences over and over, trying to understand them. I’d lose track of what I was saying mid-conversation or even mid-sentence.

What I experience now: I can read full magazines and books, but pace myself in order not to get overwhelmed. I read and respond to many student essays. I read and easily process news articles. Once in a while, I’ll lose track of what I was saying, but that’s only when I’m tired or overwhelmed, and then I quickly self-correct.

  1. Expressive language

What it means: Difficulty communicating through written and spoken words

What I experienced then: When my grandfather was struggling with dementia, I’d watch him know what he wanted to say, but be unable to find the words. So he’d get frustrated and give up, and stop participating in conversation altogether. Sometimes, when I was very sick with tick-borne illnesses, that would happen to me. At other times my words would come out in a jumble. My doctor would ask for an overview of how I’d been feeling recently and I couldn’t summarize anything for him (I started keeping a written log of daily symptoms, so that I could put together a report for appointments).

What I experience now: I still keep that written log, but my ability to express myself has improved tremendously. I write weekly columns, have written two books, give lectures, and lead conversations all without issue. Occasionally I can’t come up with a specific word, but can usually get it when prompted.

  1. Visuospatial processing

What it means: Poor spatial relationships; vision difficulties

What I experienced then: My spatial relations have never been great, because I do not have binocular vision (I only see out of one eye at a time, which means I don’t possess depth perception). With Lyme, my capacity to experience spatial relations worsened. Sometimes I’d miss my mouth with the fork, or knock a glass before getting it into the dishwasher, or bump into furniture. Other Lyme patients find themselves getting lost or forgetting where they were going entirely.

What I experience now: My spatial relationships are still not very good, but I attribute these difficulties mostly to my previous vision issues.

  1. Abstract reasoning

What it means: The inability to grasp issues and reach conclusions, or the inability to understand the consequences of one’s actions.

What I experienced then: Sometimes conversations, which previously I would have been able to follow with ease, just seemed too high-level for me. It was as if my brain would “turn off” when people were discussing intellectual issues. This was frightening because I thought I had lost my intelligence and didn’t have anything worthwhile to say. Many Lyme patients thus afflicted might say or do things they would not have otherwise, which can take a toll on relationships.

What I experience now: I can process and synthesize information from multiple sources, recall it and contribute to a conversation. I’m a reflective person—over-analytical— so I overthink potential consequences too much, but that’s not always a bad thing.

  1. Speed of mental and motor processing

What it means: Inability to keep up with a lively conversation

What I experienced then: Returning to the feeling of one’s brain clogged with molasses, I processed everything very slowly. As mentioned earlier, it took too long for me to comprehend information and respond to it.

What I experience now: On most days, my head feels clear and I can process and express thoughts cogently. I’m best in the mornings, so I’ve learned to do creative work then, rather than in the late afternoons or evenings, and I always take an early afternoon nap. When I’m overtired, the brain fog can return, but it lifts much quicker than it used to, and I experience more sunny days.

Of course, this list begs the question, how did I get better? While there is no single protocol for everyone, my neurological symptoms improved through a combination of antibiotic and antimalarial medication, nutritional and homeopathic supplements, adjunct therapies like integrative manual therapy and neurofeedback, and an anti-inflammatory diet. For more ideas on addressing Lyme brain, check out the aforementioned book, or talk with your Lyme Literate Medical Doctor (LLMD).

Note: for patients with difficulty reading, my “Living With Lyme Brain” post is now available as an audio blog.


[i] Ducharme, Nicola McFadzean. Lyme Brain. California: BioMed Publishing Group, LLC, 2016 (9-12).

Related Posts: 
Feed Your Body to Fight Lyme
Living with Lyme Brain
Dealing With Brain Fog

jennifer crystal_2

Opinions expressed by contributors are their own.

Jennifer Crystal is a writer and educator in Boston. Her memoir about her medical journey is forthcoming. Contact her at




For more:

ILADS Launches Registry & Crowd-Solving Platform: One Health Lyme

ILADS Launches Registry and Crowd-Solving Platform: One Health Lyme

Chevy Chase, MD – March 26, 2020 – The International Lyme and Associated Diseases Society (ILADS) is launching a new registry and crowd-solving platform, One Health Lyme, which will provide valuable resources to healthcare providers who are treating patients with Lyme and related diseases. In the planning stages for a while, the launch of the One Health Lyme initiative is being pushed forward expeditiously in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

One Health Lyme will give Lyme healthcare providers a unique opportunity to track and communicate the impact of COVID-19 on this specific group of patients. The unique immunological lesions of these patients will help us gain insights of general importance in the battle against COVID-19.

Similar to initiatives operated by specialty societies that treat autoimmune diseases, this project will collect data from physicians about patient experiences and treatments. The goal is to create a vast repository of information about lyme that physicians and researchers can use to study and treat it and related diseases. “Doctors are in the best position to provide insights into patient experiences and treatment efficacy,” says Dr. Robert Mozayeni, president of ILADS. “Our members are medical professionals who treat these vulnerable patients. One Health Lyme gives them a place to collect and centralize treatment response data.

One Health Lyme will also be used to provide educational material and support crowd-sourcing solutions—such as aggregating information about the efficacy of a new treatment. “Not only do we hope that it will provide real time educational information, but we also hope it will quickly supply data about what works for various subgroups of patients,” says Mozayeni.

Other Lyme organizations, such as MyLymeData, have been collecting patient-focused information, and ILADS plans to seek a partnership with them, allowing medical professionals to benefit from both initiatives.

The initiative is a collaborative effort with, whose software is designed specifically to collect data in real time from members of an extended team. Allowing loosely connected people to work together efficiently, Groopit helps organizations crowd solve, bring people together, and get quick results.

Now is a particularly important time to be collecting this information. ILADS members are in a unique position to understand how COVID-19 affects their patients.  By centralizing and sharing their observations and data, ILADS hopes that the One Health Lyme will not only inform how lyme disease patients are cared for, but it may provide insights into COVID-19 itself. “It may be that what we learn from our patients will help everyone,” notes Mozayeni.


ILADS is a nonprofit, international, multi-disciplinary medical society, dedicated to the diagnosis and appropriate treatment of Lyme and its associated diseases. ILADS promotes understanding of Lyme through research and education and strongly supports physicians and other healthcare professionals dedicated to advancing the standard of care for Lyme and its associated diseases. For more information, visit:

Media Contact: 
Barbara Buchman



Bartonella Case – Eschar & Enlarged Lymph Nodes

2020 Mar 12;20(1):216. doi: 10.1186/s12879-020-4940-0.

Scalp eschar and neck lymphadenopathy after tick bite (SENLAT) caused by Bartonella henselae in Korea: a case report.



Tick-borne lymphadenopathy (TIBOLA) is an infectious disease, mainly caused by species from the spotted fever group rickettsiae and is characterized by enlarged lymph nodes following a tick bite. Among cases of TIBOLA, a case of scalp eschar and neck lymphadenopathy after tick bite (SENLAT) is diagnosed when an eschar is present on the scalp, accompanied by peripheral lymphadenopathy (LAP). Only a few cases of SENLAT caused by Bartonella henselae have been reported.


A 58-year-old male sought medical advice while suffering from high fever and diarrhea. Three weeks before the visit, he had been hunting a water deer, and upon bringing the deer home discovered a tick on his scalp area. Symptoms occurred one week after hunting, and a lump was palpated on the right neck area 6 days after the onset of symptoms. Physical examination upon presentation confirmed an eschar-like lesion on the right scalp area, and cervical palpation revealed that the lymph nodes on the right side were non-painful and enlarged at 2.5 × 1.5 cm. Fine needle aspiration of the enlarged lymph nodes was performed, and results of nested PCR for the Bartonella internal transcribed spacer (ITS) confirmed B. henselae as the causative agent.


With an isolated case of SENLAT and a confirmation of B. henselae in Korea, it is pertinent to raise awareness to physicians in other Asian countries that B. henselae could be a causative agent for SENLAT.


For more: