Multiple sclerosis: an infectious syndrome involving Chlamydophila pneumoniae.
Stratton CW, Wheldon DB.
Department of Pathology, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, TN 37232, USA.
The concept of autoimmune myelinopathy as the primary pathology in multiple sclerosis (MS) is problematic. Vasculitis is seen in the MS brain, both within lesions and in adjacent normal-appearing white matter. The first observation in acute relapse is the sudden, orderly death of oligodendrocytes; inflammatory removal of unsupported myelin seems to be a secondary process. An alternative explanation for these findings is that oligodendrocyte infection might trigger an inflammatory response. Many pathogens, including Chlamydophila (Chlamydia) pneumoniae, have been associated with MS. MS might be an infectious syndrome in which C. pneumoniae has a role in a subset of patients. Mechanisms by which such a cryptic infection could engender relapsing-remitting and, ultimately, progressive disease patterns are discussed.PMID: 16996738 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]
We MSers interested in research frequently complain about the fact that MS researchers are not thinking outside the box and recognizing that MS is not EAE, that it is possibly infective, and that research continues to focus on lesions and proprietary MABs to knock out immunity rather than what MS actually IS.
This paper is focused on MS from a different perspective. It may be the beginning of a new era in MS treatment. Obviously, D Wheldon (who was has published medical literature before, by the way) is the doctor who, devastated by his wife's MS diagnosis and determined to find a cure, searched and studied until he found the research at Vanderbilt by Sriram and Stratton on MS. After evaluating this theory with his extensive medical background (including study of Pathology, Medical Microbiology and Neuropathology at the Radcliffe Infirmary, Oxford as well as an active medical career as a practicing Consulting Microbiologist) he found it very plausible and treated his wife via the particular version of treatment that he adapted and which is found here http://www.davidwheldon.co.uk/ms-treatment.html.
This woman who was SPMS had her symptoms reverse with treatment and is still recovering function 2 years later. She posts as Anecdote here on thisisms. Stratton and Wheldon ended up collaborating and sharing their learnings and understandings as they studied and developed ideas and eventually were invited to co-publish the theory in Trends in Microbiology, the abstract of which is quoted above. This is peer reviewed material. But more than that, this theory has at it's heart
a medical researcher whose life was personally touched by MS; someone for whom the outcome was life or pseudo life for his dear wife. How many times have I read here that somone wished the researchers would get MS THEN we'd see progress.
Well, this theory has that kind of motivation at it's heart. Though at this point it remains a theory as it has not yet had a clinical trial of it's effectiveness, and treatment of MS using it's precepts is based on anecdotal evidence that it may help (such as Anecdotes recounting of the progress here in the regimens section)it is available today with the help of a willing MD for the person who finds themselves unhelped by current "approved" therapies, as I did.
So wherein lies the possibility that CPn causes MS? This paper discusses the mechanisms by which it may occur, and the possibilities are related to understanding of the chlamydia pneumoniae germ itself (something foreign to neurologists) combined with understanding of the neurobiology of MS. These talented researchers have put two and two together and have come up with an answer that may be the "h pylori of neurology". But heres a little tidbit, unless your doc is interested in such ideas, it is not likely a neurologist subscribes to Trends in Microbiology as he does not see it as pertinent to his practice because germs are simply a non issue in the brain because of the BBB---or so they think.
The theory is interesting!