Posts tagged ‘Treatment’

Barberry: Friend or Foe?

According to assistant extension professor in the Department of Extension in the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Tom Worthley, if the shrub Japanese Barberry (Berberis thunbergii) is controlled there will be less tick-bourn infections, or TBI’s.

Introduced into the US in 1875 as a hardy plant that is attractive, it was deemed a problem child in the 80’s when it started spreading, crowding out native plants, and providing perfect conditions for earth worms. After the worms ate the litter layer, gullies formed, causing erosion, and negative soil chemistry.

But the kicker, Worthley states, is that ticks love the humid conditions caused by the Barberry. And, since the Barberry is now considered an invasive, it is found everywhere – including the woods. It is also listed as the “least wanted,” by the Plant Conservation Alliance’s Alien Plant Working Group.
When Scott Williams, wildlife biologist from the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station in New Haven, tested the Japanese barberry with humidity sensors, it tested humid enough for tick questing and mating for 23-24 hours a day. They also made a map showing the distribution of the shrub and overlaid a Lyme disease distribution map over it. They are remarkably similar.

But all characters in a good play have many sides.
According to Ray Sahelian, M.D., the delinquent Barberry has the alkaloid Berberine which has a strong history of use in both Indian and Chinese medicine and is found in the roots, rhizomes, and stems. The same substance found in Goldenseal, Coptis or golden thread, and the Oregon Grape, is even stronger in Barberry according to some experts. It also has carbohydrates, organic acids, vitamins, poliphenolic compounds, pectin, tannin, and minerals. The berries have been made into jam and for cooking.  Its wood and its root have a distinctive electric yellow color.  Berberis thunbergii or Japanese barberry is a species in cultivation and can be identified due to its flowers being produced in umbels (think umbrella shaped), and has very poor tasting berries, while Berberis vulgarism or European barberry grows wild in much of Europe and West Asia and can be identified by its flowers being produced in racemes and produces large crops of edible berries rich in vitamin C, but has a very sharp acidic flavor and is used by locals similarly to how citrus peel might be used. It is the vulgarism species used predominantly in herbal medicine.

But wait, there’s More.
German researchers have discovered that the vulgarism species can make complex decisions. In a nutshell, it can abort its own seeds to prevent parasite infestation, particularly of the tephritid fruit fly, while its relative, the Oregon Grape, has no such capability. It even appears able to anticipate. The researchers found that if the infested fruit contains two seeds, then in 75 percent of the cases, the plants will abort the infested seeds, in order to save the second intact seed. If the fruit only contains one seed, then the plant will only abort the infested seed in 5 percent of the cases, perhaps speculating that the larva could still possibly die naturally.

There are differences between the two species but they both have antibacterial, antiseptic, and anti-cancer attributes, and both contain Berberine, universally present in rhizomes of Berberis species. Since it is not appreciably absorbed by the body, it is used orally in the treatment of various enteric infections, especially bacterial dysentery.
The vulgarism species is rated higher medicinally, and is also an astringent, antispasmodic, diuretic, expectorant, laxative, purgative, stomachic (kills intestinal bugs including candida and C. difficile), refrigerant, and useful for TB, diarrhea, and as a tonic for the gallbladder to improve the flow of bile. A tincture of the root bark, about 6% berberine, has been used in the treatment of rheumatism and sciatica. It has also been used against malaria, as well as for opium and morphine withdrawal.

According to Master Herbalist, Steven Buhner (2015), Berberine is a very strong antibacterial and is active against a large number of resistant and nonresistant bacteria. Similar to garlic, he feels it is not systemic and potent enough to work as a primary treatment for Babesia, but it is effective against numerous strains of Mycoplasmas due to the fact most of it is excreted in the kidneys, urinary passages, and bowels. Only a tiny fraction of Berberine is systemic as the body considers it a toxin and is one of those herbs that should not be taken over long periods of time. But, probably, the greatest benefit is it is found to be synergistic with pharmaceuticals by increasing their activity and effectiveness. (2013).

Barberry is perhaps another one of those invasives that needs a second glance. MSIDS sufferers have found many plants considered pests by the experts to be quite helpful in their treatment. A mug-shot lineup would include Japanese Knotweed, the greater celandine, bidens, sida, kudzu, isatis, houttuynina, Eleutherococcus spinosus, teasel, and the thorny delinquent, barberry shrub.

Buhner states some of the most helpful herbs are scattered everywhere and that instead of eradicating them we should be asking why they are here.  I couldn’t agree more.

Perhaps we can work out a deal with the DNR to harvest a portion of these invasives and give them to sick patients!

For more information go to:

Lyme Doctor Making a Difference

“Making a Difference: Milwaukee Doctor Chronicles a Silent Epidemic”  by Fran Zell

Click here to read the whole story

Excerpt:  “Deep into his 80’s, Dr. Burton Waisbren Sr. not only still maintains an active practice at his Milwaukee clinic treating people with “problem diseases,” he also writes about it. In his new book, Treatment of Chronic Lyme Disease  (iUniverse, $24.95), Waisbren chronicles 51 cases, many of them seriously ill people he treated with success after other doctors turned them away for lack of “scientific evidence” that they were sick.”

Burrascanno’s Guidelines

Here’s a link to Dr. Burrascano’s Guidelines.

Evidence of Persistent Lyme Disease

The following link is a voluminous report showing multiple studies

and evidence of persistent lyme disease, even after abx treatment.

Notes from Dr. Joseph Burrascano about HGRV (formerly known as XMRV)

First email was posted on the Co-Cure list

(announcements for the CFS/ME and FM community) via permission from Dr. B.

“I just returned from the first official scientific symposium of the Whittemore-Peterson Institute on the topic of XMRV. We formed a working group to be in constant touch and we plan to meet regularly because advances are coming so rapidly. Big news that everyone should know and adopt is that we have proposed a name change for the virus.

This virus is a human, not mouse virus, and it is the first and so far only gamma-retrovirus known to infect people. Also, it is clearly not an “endogenous” retrovirus (one that is present in all genomes due to ancient infection).

Because of all of this, and because of the desire to begin on the right track, the new name of the virus is HGRV- Human Gamma Retro Virus. The illness caused by this infection is named HGRAD- Human Gamma Retrovirus Associated Disease.

We plan to announce this at the upcoming NIH retroviral conference this September.

Definitely stay tuned- the volume of new and important information about this virus and its disease associations is increasing rapidly and in my opinion should be a concern to every patient with chronic neuro-immune diseases, including those with chronic Lyme.”

Second email:

Thanks for letting me know there is a buzz about this going on.
I am not part of the WPI (Whittemore Peterson Institute) but I do have an interest in HGRV (formerly known as XMRV) because I strongly believe it is an important contributor to what we know as chronic Lyme. I also believe it is involved in some way with autism and CFIDS, and possibly other so-called “neuroimmune diseases”.
What is needed to further the study of HGRV is to set up clinical trials, because so far, all formal work on this virus is being done in the labs. To accomplish this, we are in the process of setting up a clinical working group, to consist of an alliance between researchers and clinicians. I was invited to join this group- of course, I accepted.
That is the scoop- please feel free to forward this note to any interested parties.
Dr. B…………………….!

Contact Colleen Nicholson 516-286-7196

Research Assistant to Dr. Burrascano, MD