Lyme and Alzheimer's -

Topics with information and discussion about published studies related to Lyme disease and other tick-borne diseases.
Post Reply
Joe Ham
Posts: 489
Joined: Fri 27 Jul 2007 6:15
Location: New Mexico, USA

Lyme and Alzheimer's -

Post by Joe Ham » Mon 24 Dec 2007 19:40

Some excerpts on the possible link between Lyme and Alzheimer's.
There is one joker in the stack just to show how simplistic some researchers can be.

1987 Jul MacDonald (abstract)
An undetermined fraction of patients with Alzheimer's disease may be shown to have late tertiary neuroborreliosis. ... t=Citation

1993 Jul Miklossy (abstract)
These observations suggest that spirochetes may be one of the causes of AD and that they may be the source of the beta amyloid deposited in the AD brain. ... stractPlus

1994 Jun Miklossy (abstract)
Moreover, the spirochaetes were isolated and cultured from brain tissue. We now show, using scanning electron microscopy and atomic force microscopy that the helically shaped microorganisms isolated and cultured from the Alzheimer brains possess axial filaments. This indicates that these microorganisms taxonomically indeed belong to the order Spirochaetales. A morphometric analysis reinforces this notion. ... med_DocSum

1995 Waniek (abstract)
The authors report a case of fatal neuropsychiatric Lyme disease (LD) that was expressed clinically by progressive frontal lobe dementia and pathologically by severe subcortical degeneration.

Antibiotic treatment resulted in transient improvement, but the patient relapsed after the antibiotics were discontinued. ... stractPlus

1998 Miklossy (full PDF)
Neuropathologically analyzed 54 autopsied brains were investigated. The 54 cases consisted of 32 Alzheimer's disease (AD) cases with severe AD-type changes, 12 cases with low number of senile plaques and 10 cases without any AD-type changes. We have found that in the 32 AD cases with high number of plaques and in the 12 cases with low number of plaques, bacterial peptidoglycan was immunolocalized to senile plaques and on serial sections co-localized with beta-amyloid protein.
This suggests that bacteria even in the form of nonviable bacterial remnants may well trigger the cascade of events leading to amyloid deposition in AD.*/http://www ... klossy.pdf

1999 May McLaughlin (abstract)
It has been reported previously that spirochetes could be one of the causes of Alzheimer's disease (AD).
In this study, we have attempted to reproduce these findings by examining fresh blood samples from 22 patients diagnosed with early stage (n = 16) and late stage (n = 6) AD.
The patients were participants in a clinical drug trial.

Fresh necropsy brain cortical specimens from AD patients (n = 7) were also examined. Spirochetes were observed microscopically in the blood of only one late-stage AD patient. None of the brain tissues showed the presence of spirochetes. Our results suggest that spirochetes are probably not associated with AD.

2003 A patent application
A method of reducing the effects of Alzheimer's Dementia can include a step of administering amoxicillin and Vitamin B.sub.12 to a patient experiencing Alzheimer Dementia.

2004 Miklossy
Borrelia antigens and genes were co-localized with beta-amyloid deposits in these AD cases. The data indicate that Borrelia burgdorferi may persist in the brain and be associated with amyloid plaques in AD. They suggest that these spirochetes, perhaps in an analogous fashion to Treponema pallidum, may contribute to dementia, cortical atrophy and amyloid deposition. ... t=Citation

2005 Miklossy
Morphological changes analogous to the amyloid deposits of AD brain were observed following 2-8 weeks of exposure to the spirochetes. ... m%2Cisrctn

2006-2 Miklossy
Beta-amyloid deposition and Alzheimer's type changes induced by Borrelia spirochetes. ... stractPlus

2006-4 Meer, Fallon, et al
Lyme disease associated with Alzheimer's disease. ... stractPlus

2006-5 MacDonald
Plaques of Alzheimer's disease originate from cysts of Borrelia burgdorferi, the Lyme disease spirochete.

2006-11 Livengood, Gilmore
Invasion of human neuronal and glial cells by an infectious strain of Borrelia burgdorferi ... s=17045505

Edit to correct a link
Last edited by Joe Ham on Mon 26 May 2008 1:10, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
Posts: 2421
Joined: Fri 27 Jul 2007 16:02

Re: Lyme and Alzheimer's -

Post by Yvonne » Sun 25 May 2008 21:18

PDF of the abstract Joe post:

Beta-amyloid deposition and Alzheimer’s type changes induced by Borrelia spirochetes

It has been known for almost a century that chronic bacterial
infection may lead to amyloid deposition in infected
tissues and also that amyloidosis can be induced by bacteria
under experimental conditions [30]. Alzheimer’s disease
(AD) is a form of amyloidosis. The amyloid substance that
accumulates in the brain is a 4 kDa peptide (A), which is
derived by proteolytic cleavage of amyloid beta precursor
protein (APP) [16]. The pathological mechanism driving
the accumulation of this type of amyloid in AD brain remains
unclear. Intriguingly, the clinical and pathological hallmarks
of AD are present in dementia paralytica in the tertiary stage
of syphilis caused by the spirochete Treponema pallidum
[2,3,27]. Recent observations have shown that several bacteria
contain amyloidogenic proteins, including spirochetes
[5,15,19,22,23,26]. The outer surface protein (OspA) of
Borrelia burgdorferi spirochete has been shown to induce
amyloid fibrils in vitro, similar to human amyloid [26].
To test the hypothesis that bacteria might induce an
amyloidogenic reaction in mammalian cells in vitro, we
exposed cultures of rat primary neurons and astrocytes to
the spirochete B. burgdorferi, and the PC 12 cell line to the
bacterial inflammatory surface molecule lipopolysaccharide
(LPS). We report here the results of such exposures.

Exposure of mammalian neuronal and glial cells to Borrelia
spirochetes induced the defining pathological hallmarks
of AD, including A deposition, increased APP levels, and
hyperphosphorylation of tau.
Thioflavin S-positive and A-immunoreactive “plaques”,
as well as tangle- and granulovacuolar-like formations, were
present in cell cultures exposed to Borellia burgdorferi spirochetes.
In addition, Western blot analysis detected a 4 kDa
A immunoreactive band in the infected cultures.
SIMRS is an extremely valuable tool for the analysis of
chemical composition of biological and biomedical samples
[7]. The chemical spectra of protein solutions, single cells or
well-defined areas of tissue sections can be analyzed. Characteristic
absorption bands observed in many biological materials
include the ‘Amide I’ band at 1650 cm−1 resulting largely
from the number of carbonyl (C O) stretching vibrations of
protein amide bonds. A second peak in the “Amide I” band
near 1630 cm−1, is present in senile plaques representative
of -sheet protein structure [6]. This peak near 1630 cm−
was observed not only in the senile plaques of the 5AD
cases tested, but also in the thioflavin S-positive “plaques”
in infected cell cultures following 4-week exposure to
These observations indicate that exposure of mammalian
cells to Borrelia spirochetes induces an AD-like host cell
reaction. ... myloid.pdf
Listen to all,
plucking a feather from every passing goose,
but follow no one absolutely

Posts: 300
Joined: Wed 21 Nov 2007 4:08

Re: Lyme and Alzheimer's -

Post by OneGuest » Sun 25 May 2008 22:46

These are amazing and stupendous finds.

Call me excitable, but could these be used
as supporting evidence for chronic treatment resistant
infection? And the consequences of not treating, etc?


Posts: 1001
Joined: Sat 3 Nov 2007 10:27

Re: Lyme and Alzheimer's -

Post by minitails2 » Mon 26 May 2008 7:40

Thanks Porky and Yvonne,

I don't have the attention span to get through all of these at once, but these are great. I actually took my mom in for a WB last week, so next time I go into my lyme doc, I guess I'll find out. Any other such articles would be gratefully received. I always wonder why, in retrospect, interesting leads are ignored completely. Yikes.

Thanks again,

B.B. ;)

Joe Ham
Posts: 489
Joined: Fri 27 Jul 2007 6:15
Location: New Mexico, USA

Re: Lyme and Alzheimer's -

Post by Joe Ham » Mon 30 Mar 2009 19:28

You guys all missed the joker in the stack; it's 1999 May McLaughlin.
He looked for evidence of brain infection by testing peripheral blood.
Then he looked for evidence of spirochetes in the brain but not for the L-forms of Bb. There is no mention of the possibility of intra-neuronal location.

Note to McLaughlin: thinking is required. Sorry Bout Dat.

Joe Ham
Posts: 489
Joined: Fri 27 Jul 2007 6:15
Location: New Mexico, USA

Re: Lyme and Alzheimer's -

Post by Joe Ham » Mon 30 Mar 2009 20:31

J Alzheimers Dis. 2008 May;13(4):381-91.
Chronic inflammation and amyloidogenesis in Alzheimer's disease -- role of Spirochetes.

Miklossy J.
University of British Columbia, Kinsmen Laboratory of Neurological Research, Vancouver, BC, Canada.

Alzheimer's disease (AD) is associated with dementia, brain atrophy and the aggregation and accumulation of a cortical amyloid-beta peptide (Abeta).

Chronic bacterial infections are frequently associated with amyloid deposition. It had been known from a century that the spirochete Treponema pallidum can cause dementia in the atrophic form of general paresis. It is noteworthy that the pathological hallmarks of this atrophic form are similar to those of AD. Recent observations showed that bacteria, including spirochetes contain amyloidogenic proteins and also that Abeta deposition and tau phosphorylation can be induced in or in vivo following exposure to bacteria or LPS.

Bacteria or their poorly degradable debris are powerful inflammatory cytokine inducers, activate complement, affect vascular permeability, generate nitric oxide and free radicals, induce apoptosis and are amyloidogenic.

All these processes are involved in the pathogenesis of AD. Old and new observations, reviewed here, indicate that to consider the possibility that bacteria, including several types of spirochetes highly prevalent in the population at large or their persisting debris may initiate cascade of events leading to chronic inflammation and amyloid deposition in AD is important, as appropriate antibacterial and antiinflammatory therapy would be available to prevent dementia.

PMID: 18487847 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
paresis: incomplete or partial paralysis
LPS: lipopolysaccharide

User avatar
Posts: 976
Joined: Fri 13 Jan 2012 22:32

Re: Lyme and Alzheimer's -

Post by inmacdonald » Thu 14 Jun 2012 15:39

An Image from my alzheimer/neuroborreliosis research to consider:

Borrelia Spirochetes inside Brain Neurons Alzheimer's Disease Alan MacDonald 2006.pdf
Intraneuronal borrelia spirochetes alzheimer's fresh brain monolayer peparations
(286.97 KiB) Downloaded 71 times


Post Reply