Archive for the ‘research’ Category

Seropositivity to Tick Endosymbiont As A Marker To Determine Tick Bite Exposure

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31397213/

Seropositivity to Midichloria mitochondrii (order Rickettsiales) as a marker to determine the exposure of humans to tick bite.

Abstract

Ixodes ricinus is the most common tick species parasitizing humans in Europe, and the main vector of Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato, the causative agent of Lyme disease in the continent. This tick species also harbors the endosymbiont Midichloria mitochondrii, and there is strong evidence that this bacterium is inoculated into the vertebrate host during the blood meal. A high proportion of tick bites remains unnoticed due to rarity of immediate symptoms, implying the risk of occult tick-borne infections in turn a potential risk factor for the onset of chronic-degenerative diseases. Since suitable tools to determine the previous exposure to I. ricinus bites are needed, this work investigated whether seropositivity toward a protein of M. mitochondrii (rFliD) could represent a marker for diagnosis of I. ricinus bite.

We screened 274 sera collected from patients from several European countries, at different risk of tick bite, using an ELISA protocol. Our results show a clear trend indicating that positivity to rFliD is higher where the tick bite can be regarded as certain/almost certain, and lower where there is an uncertainty on the bite, with the highest positivity in Lyme patients (47.30%) and the lowest (2.00%) in negative controls.

According to the obtained results, M. mitochondrii can be regarded as a useful source of antigens, with the potential to be used to assess the exposure to ticks harboring this bacterium. In prospect, additional antigens from M. mitochondrii and tick salivary glands should be investigated and incorporated in a multi-antigen test for tick bite diagnosis.

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**Comment**

This is an interesting study with future potential. Essentially they are saying since Lyme is so hard to detect – find its friends and you may find Lyme.

I’ve written about endosymbionts before, particularly Wolbachia:

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2017/07/10/wolbachia-the-next-frankenstein/

Briefly, endosymbionts are organisms living in the body or cells of another organism in a symbiotic relationshipwhich isn’t always of mutual benefit. An example of a mutualistic relationship is the protozoan endosymbionts inside a termite which help it to break down the wood it eats.
However, in the case of Wolbachia, while the benefit between itself and the worms it lives in may be mutualistic, it’s caused harm in dogs being treated for heart worm. Heart worm medication causes Wolbachia to be released into the blood and tissues causing severe Inflammation in pulmonary artery endothelium which may form thrombi and interstitial inflammation. Wolbachia also activates pro inflammatory cytokines. For human Lyme/MSIDS patients this could translate out to a similar result when they are treated for worms, which ticks also carry.
What I find interesting here is that both Midichloria and Wolbachia are in the same subclass of Rickettsidae and order Rickettsiales. Guess who else is in these groups?
  • Rickettsia
  • Ehrlichia
Both of which cause a variety of human and animal illness.

The question of course is, could these supposedly harmless endosymbionts be responsible for more than they are given credit for? Testing for them may not only reveal that Lyme is present but in fact that they are contributing to the problem. Sounds like an exciting field of discovery.

Endocarditis Caused by Bartonella Quintana, A Rare Case in the U.S.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6667705/

. 2019; 17: e00533.
Published online 2019 Apr 6. doi: 10.1016/j.idcr.2019.e00533
PMCID: PMC6667705
PMID: 31384552

Endocarditis caused by Bartonella Quintana, a rare case in the United States

Abstract

Bartonella quintana is a relatively rare cause of endocarditis in the United States (USA). Historically it was linked with trench fever, but cardiac involvement seems to be more prevalent recently. There are some known risk factors associated with Bartonella quintana endocarditis such as human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection, alcoholism, homelessness and poor hygiene. We report a case of 37-year-old African man, with culture negative endocarditis, emboli and rising B. quintana and B. henselae IgG titers. B. quintana DNA was subsequently detected from the mitral valve sample with 16S rRNA gene and ribC primer sets. Eventually, blood culture for B. quintana was positive after 21 days. Patient was successfully treated with doxycycline and gentamicin. There have been a few cases of B. quintana endocarditis in the USA and most of them were associated with HIV infection, homelessness or alcoholism. The case reported here highlights the importance of high clinical suspicious for Bartonella species in blood culture negative endocarditis in the USA in appropriate setting and will help to increase awareness among physicians for early diagnosis and treatment.

___________________

**Comment**

A few points of interest:

  • Patient’s chief complaints:  progressive shortness of breath, chest painoccasional non-drenching night sweats, fatigue, unintentional ten pound weight loss, and intermittent sharp chest pain radiating to the neck
  • Past medical history significant for latent tuberculosis infection and treatment completed 3 months prior to the presentation
  • While living in the Democratic Republic of Congo before migrating to Indiana, patient had a cow at his home and used to drink raw cow’s milk
  • Had Janeway Lesions on hands & feet http://www.healthgala.info/2017/08/Janeway-lesion-Pictures-Definition-Symptoms-Causes-Treatment.html

Janeway lesion Pictures, Definition, Symptoms, Causes, Treatment

Janeway lesion Pictures, Definition, Symptoms, Causes, Treatment

  • Was considered immunocompetent 

For more:  https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2017/01/04/endocarditis-consider-bartonella/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2018/09/28/bartonella-infective-endocarditis-with-dissemination-a-case-report-literature-review/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2019/08/12/tick-borne-pathogens-bartonella-spp-borrelia-burgdorferi-sensu-lato-coxiella-burnetii-rickettsia-spp-may-trigger-endocarditis/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2019/04/25/case-of-endocarditis-caused-by-bartonella-after-mitral-valve-repair/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2018/07/10/infective-endocarditis-associated-with-bartonella-henselae-a-case-series/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2019/04/24/human-bartonellosis-an-underappreciated-public-health-problem/

 

 

 

 

 

Borrelia Miyamotoi Infection Leads to Cross-Reactive Antibodies to the C6 Peptide in Mice & Men

https://www.clinicalmicrobiologyandinfection.com/article/S1198-743X(19)30418-5/fulltext

Borrelia miyamotoi infection leads to cross-reactive antibodies to the C6 peptide in mice and men

Joris Koetsveld1,,'Correspondence information about the author Joris Koetsveld
Alexander E. Platonov2
Konstantin Kuleshov2
Alex Wagemakers1
Dieuwertje Hoornstra1
Wim Ang3
Sandor Szekeres4
Gilian L.A. van Duijvendijk5
Erol Fikrig6
Monica E. Embers7
Hein Sprong4
Joppe W. Hovius1,∗∗,'Correspondence information about the author Joppe W. Hovius

Abstract

Objectives

Borrelia miyamotoi is a relapsing fever Borrelia, transmitted by hard (Ixodes) ticks, which are also the main vector for Borrelia burgdorferi. A widely used test for serodiagnosis of Lyme borreliosis is an EIA based on the C6 peptide of the B. burgdorferi sl VlsE protein. We set out to study C6 reactivity upon infection with B. miyamotoiin a large well-characterized set of Borrelia miyamotoi disease (BMD) patient sera and in experimental murine infection.

Methods

We performed in-silico analyses, comparing the C6-peptide to immunodominant B. miyamotoi variable large proteins (Vlps). Next, we determined C6 reactivity in sera from mice infected with B. miyamotoi and in a unique longitudinal set of 191 sera from 46 BMD patients.

Results

In-silico analyses revealed similarity of the C6-peptide to domains within B. miyamotoi Vlps. Cross-reactivity against the C6-peptide was confirmed in 21/24 mice experimentally infected with B. miyamotoi.Moreover, 35/46 BMD patients had a C6 EIA Lyme-index higher than 1.1 (positive). Interestingly, 27/37 patients with a C6 EIA Lyme-index higher than 0.9 (equivocal) were negative when tested for specific B. burgdorferi sl antibodies using a commercially available immunoblot.

Conclusions

We show that infection with B. miyamotoi leads to cross-reactive antibodies to the C6-peptide. Since BMD and Lyme borreliosis are found in the same geographical locations, caution should be used when relying solely on C6-reactivity testing. We propose that a positive C6 EIA with negative immunoblot, especially in patients with fever several weeks after a tick bite, warrants further testing for B. miyamotoi.

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**Comment**

For a great read on cross -reactivity in testing:  https://lymemd.blogspot.com/2014/08/labcorp-and-lyme-western-blot.html  Written by Dr. Jaller

The article makes some excellent points:

  • As of 2014 Labcorp no longer allows physicians to order Western Blots for Lyme disease. The only test available is the ELISA with reflex to Western Blot if positive.
  • They have also taken away the C6 peptide.  The results are presented as only negative if less than 0.91
  • Some ID doctors are inappropriately applying the HIV testing paradigm in the case of Lyme testing
  • The IDSA claims, without reference, there’s a lot of false positive Lyme Western Blots because of cross reactivity
  • The test was developed based on a meeting 20 years ago for surveillance (an epidemiology or research tool) not for diagnosis
  • The long arm of the IDSA has managed to promote its agenda by manipulating the CDC and now Labcorp
  • CDC’s Dr. Beard’s s comment to the author was an admission that politics have trumped reason, logic and science when he stated about the flawed testing, “Well, that’s the party line.”
The testing stronghold dilemma continues unabated in the topsy-turvy world of Lymeland.

Remember….

64357008_10217935576008450_2638357839671721984_n

“I am Barbara Johnson. I am a biochemist by training and I am speaking today on behalf of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention concerning serodiagnosis of Lyme disease. Specifically, my statement is in support of (the) IDSA recommendation in the guidelines to use two-tiered serology (an ELISA screening test followed by Western Blots if ELISA positive) to support the diagnosis of Lyme disease in patients who have manifestations other than acute erythema migrans.  – IDSA Lyme Disease Review Panel Hearing, July 30, 2009

For more dirty deeds done dirt cheap: ConflictReport

 

An Unexpected Case of Bartonella Alsatica Prosthetic Vascular Graft Infection

https://www.dovepress.com/an-unexpected-case-of-bartonella-alsatica-prosthetic-vascular-graft-in-peer-reviewed-article-IDR

An unexpected case of Bartonella alsatica prosthetic vascular graft infection

Authors Puges M, Ménard A, Berard X, Geneviève M, Pinaquy JB, Edouard S, Pereyre S, Cazanave C

Published 7 August 2019 Volume 2019:12 Pages 2453—2456

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/IDR.S206805

Abstract: Bartonella alsatica is a wild rabbit pathogen causing bacteremia rarely reported in humans, with only three cases published so far, including one lymphadenitis and two endocarditis cases. Here, we report the case of a 66-year-old man who suffered from acute renal failure due to a membranoproliferative glomerulonephritis. Fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG) positron emission tomography/computed tomography (PET/CT) showed diffuse FDG uptake around the aortobifemoral graft with no indication of infection. A white blood cell scan showed an accumulation of labeled neutrophils on the left femoral part of the graft. The patient underwent surgery and an abscess around the left iliac part of the graft was found intraoperatively. Intraoperative samples were all negative, but 16S rRNA gene-based PCR was positive, and the sequence was positioned among the Bartonella species cluster. Specific PCRs targeting groEL/hsp60, rpoB and gltA genes were performed and led to the identification of B. alsatica. Accordingly, indirect immunofluorescence serological analyses were positive for Bartonella henselae and Bartonella quintana. The patient had a history of regularly hunting wild rabbits. He was treated with 100 mg of doxycycline twice a day for six months and his renal function significantly improved with no sign of persistent infection. This case highlights the contribution of serology assays and molecular-based methods in prosthetic vascular graft infection diagnosis.________________

For more: https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2016/01/03/bartonella-treatment/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2019/02/27/advanced-imaging-found-bartonella-around-pic-line/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2019/05/09/bartonella-transmitted-to-children-at-birth-causing-chronic-infections/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2019/06/06/high-titers-of-bartonella-found-in-patients-with-musculoskeletal-complaints/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2019/04/24/human-bartonellosis-an-underappreciated-public-health-problem/

Deadly Germ Research Is Shut Down At Army Lab Over Safety Concerns

While I’ve already posted the information that research at the military’s leading biodefense center in Fort Detrick, Maryland is being suspended due to problems with disposal of dangerous materials,  https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2019/08/07/fort-detrick-lab-shut-down-after-failed-safety-inspection-all-research-halted-indefinitely/, this article includes a list of select agents and toxins considered a potential severe threat to human and animal health.  Article found here:  https://ww w.nytimes.com/2019/08/05/health/germs-fort-detrick-biohazard.html

The institute, which has about 900 employees, studies germs and toxins that could be used to threaten the military or public health. It also investigates disease outbreaks and carries out research projects for government agencies, universities and drug companies, which pay for the work. 

The select agents and toxins list is found here. According to the NBACC website, the facility conducts research on pathogens for which there is no vaccine or treatment.  https://www.selectagents.gov/SelectAgentsandToxinsList.html

Interestingly, the following from the list are transmitted by ticks:

For more: https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2019/07/31/tick-expert-admits-to-working-on-ticks-dropping-them-out-of-airplanes/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2019/07/19/biological-warfare-experiment-on-american-citizens-results-in-spreading-pandemic/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2019/07/21/got-15-minutes-the-officially-ignored-link-between-lyme-plum-island/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2019/08/08/kris-newby-interview-the-real-news-network-is-the-rise-in-lyme-disease-due-to-weaponized-ticks/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2019/08/04/lyme-disease-amendment-passes-house-tells-dod-ig-to-investigate-the-bioweaponization-of-ticks/

It is interesting the lab is suddenly closing down at the exact time an amendment passes the House telling the Department of Defense to investigate tick bioweaponization….

Burgdorfer, the discoverer of the Lyme bacterium, was a key member of this project team. He worked on weaponizing ticks and teamed up with fellow tick expert James Oliver at the Ft. Detrick bioweapons headquarters to develop ways to mass produce infected ticks so that they could be dropped from airplanes on enemy territory. These claims are backed up by interviews with these scientists, as well as with extensive government documentation from multiple reliable sources, all listed in BITTEN…(the book by Kris Newby).

Dr. Burgdorfer, “was engaged for 3 years on classified projects (Army) from which findings could not be published because of their impact on national defense.”  https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2019/08/06/kris-newby-responds-to-telfords-criticism-of-bitten/

Another article on the lab assisting the FBI: http://www.progressive-charlestown.com/2017/06/just-hold-your-breath.html

Tick-borne Pathogens Bartonella spp., Borrelia Burgdorferi Sensu Lato, Coxiella Burnetii & Rickettsia Spp. May Trigger Endocarditis

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31374162/

2019 Jul;28(7):957-963. doi: 10.17219/acem/94159.

Tick-borne pathogens Bartonella spp., Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato, Coxiella burnetii and Rickettsia spp. may trigger endocarditis.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Infections caused by tick-borne pathogens such as Bartonella spp., Borrelia burgdorferi s.l., Coxiella burnetii and Rickettsia spp. are capable of causing serious lesions of the mitral and aortic valves, leading to a need for valve replacement.

OBJECTIVES:

The aim of the study was to determine whether such cases are sporadic or frequent. An additional goal was to establish effective diagnostic methods to detect these infections.

MATERIAL AND METHODS:

The study involved 148 patients undergoing valve replacement. Blood samples were drawn for serological testing. Samples of the removed mitral and aortic valves were tested with PCR and immunohistochemical staining.

RESULTS:

Specific antibodies to

  • Bartonella spp. were detected in 47 patients (31.7%) and in 1 of the healthy controls (1%) (p < 0.05)
  • B. burgdorferi spirochetes were found in 18 of the patients (12.2%) and in 6 blood donors from the control group (5.8%) (p < 0.1)
  • Rickettsia spp. were detected in 12 (8.1%) 
  • C. burnetii phase I and II antigens in the serum of 1 patient. All the participants in the control group were seronegative to C. burnetii and Rickettsia spp. antigens.
  • PCR tests for detection of Bartonella spp., B. burgdorferi s.l., C. burnetii and Rickettsia spp. DNA in the valve samples were all negative.

Inflammation foci with mononuclear lymphoid cells in the aortic and mitral valves were seen in sections stained with hematoxiline and eozine. In sections dyed using the indirect immunofluorescence method with hyperimmune sera, Bartonella spp. and Rickettsia spp. were found.

CONCLUSIONS:

The results obtained indicate that laboratory diagnostics for patients with heart disorders should be expanded to include tests detecting tick-borne zoonoses such as bartonelloses, Lyme borreliosis, rickettsioses and Q fever.

________________

**Comment**

This article shows that tick borne pathogens are common with patients needing heart valve replacements. Unfortunately, testing still isn’t accurate. Finding antibodies, authorities would argue, doesn’t mean a person has symptoms; however, this issue desperately needs further research as finding antibodies does indicate the presence of pathogens.

A point to be made about the low percentage of those testing positive for Lyme might be due to the fact they only tested one strain: Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato.  There are 300 strains worldwide and 100 in the U.S. (and counting).

Bartonella is similar in the fact that a recent article pointed out that a 14-year-old boy with PANS caused by Bartonella henselae infection was NOT seropositive. Only one of the three blood samples tested positive before culturing and only two tested positive after culturing. A single blood draw might have missed confirming a diagnosis of bartonellosis.

How many doctors are going to hunt these infections to ground? How many have the time and doggedness it requires to find them? It’s far more likely they will take the results from a singular test, close the book, and move onto the next patient.

We desperately need accurate tests that pick up ALL the pathogens.

 

 

 

Multimodal Imaging of Two Unconventional Cases of Bartonella Neuroretinitis

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31348120

2019 Jul 16. doi: 10.1097/ICB.0000000000000893. [Epub ahead of print]

MULTIMODAL IMAGING OF TWO UNCONVENTIONAL CASES OF BARTONELLA NEURORETINITIS.

Abstract

PURPOSE:

To report two cases of cat-scratch fever with atypical posterior segment manifestations.

METHODS:

Two cases were retrospectively reviewed.

RESULTS:

  • A 27-year-old woman presented with painless blurring of central vision in her left eye. Clinical examination revealed a small focal area of retinitis within the macula associated with a subtle macular star. Spectral-domain optical coherence tomography showed a hyper-reflective inner retinal lesion in addition to subretinal and intraretinal fluid as well as hyperreflective foci within the outer plexiform layer. Serology was positive for anti-B. henselae IgM (titer 1:32).
  • A 34-year-old woman presented with painless loss of vision in both eyes associated with headaches and pain with extraocular movement. Spectral-domain optical coherence tomography depicted subretinal fluid, intraretinal fluid, and hyperreflective deposits within the outer plexiform layer. A focal collection of vitreous cell was observed overlying the optic nerve in the left eye. Bilateral disk leakage was identified on fluorescein angiography. Serology revealed high-titer anti-B. henselae antibodies (IgM titers 1:32, IgG titers 1:256).

CONCLUSION:

Our cases highlight the necessity of recognizing more unusual posterior segment presentations of ocular bartonellosis. Multimodal retinal imaging including spectral-domain optical coherence tomography may help better characterize lesions.

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For more:  https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2019/07/28/treatment-strategies-for-neuroretinitis-due-to-bartonella-current-options-emerging-therapies/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2018/07/10/bartonella-henselae-neuroretinitis-in-patients-without-cat-scratch/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2017/07/21/bartonella-and-neuroretinitis/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2018/05/10/bartonella-neuroretinitis-not-atypical/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2019/04/08/case-series-bartonella-ocular-manifestations/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2019/02/27/advanced-imaging-found-bartonella-around-pic-line/  Bartonella, like Lyme, can be persistent causing chronic infection.