The stomach and enteroviruses

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The stomach and enteroviruses

Postby cheerleader » Wed Sep 19, 2007 9:04 am

Any one else feel that their MS is somehow related to a history of gastric/intestinal viruses? My husband almost died as an infant, from a virus which left him severely dehydrated. He's since had a "sensitive stomach" -has contracted food poisoning on several occasions, and suffered more than his share of stomach flus. Conversely, he has never had respiratory difficulties- a cold now and then, but not much above the belt.

When he was dx with MS this year, I couldn't help but think there was a correlation.

Dr. John Chia, an infectious disease physician in Torrance, CA, has performed stomach biopsies on CFS patients, and found 82% of the samples contained entereoviral particles, from initial infections that had taken place up to 20 years earlier. He went to the gut, instead of collecting blood, because that was where the viruses were replicating.

http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/82329.php

I realize this is CFS, not MS, and I'm veering a bit OT (apologies), but I've been reading all the posts on the viral component to MS, and find this fascinating.

Any other "gut" reactions?

Best,
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Postby Loobie » Wed Sep 19, 2007 9:38 am

I have never really had any gut issues, but I know there are others on here who feel the same way, that it comes down to the digestive tract. I've always been somewhat of an "iron belly", but used to get a lot of sinus infections. There are some on this site who look for that correlation as well.
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Postby Lyon » Wed Sep 19, 2007 11:24 am

First, you started the thread so I guess it's your right to take it off topic.

From what I've been able to tell, if it has to do with MS, or you think it might have to do with MS, or if you wonder if it has to do with MS, it's fair game to talk about on this site.

I have a younger brother and sister who are quite a bit younger than us other kids and they were the only two people in our family who caught scarlet fever in their youth. One example doesn't make conclusive evidence but I've always thought it was really suspicious that they ended up being the only two people in our family to have autoimmune diseases (Grave's and Crohn's).

I HOPE people talk about possible MS factors other than what is commonly accepted or commonly considered because rehashing the status quo isn't working.

Bob
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Postby Loobie » Wed Sep 19, 2007 11:29 am

I had scarlet fever as a kid, so now you have two!
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Postby Lyon » Wed Sep 19, 2007 1:02 pm

That's kind of eerie Lou. I've asked my wife if she had scarlet fever as a kid, but she was the baby of the family and her Mom died when she was 18, her Dad didn't pay attention to that kind of thing and her siblings don't know either.

Were your parents older when you were born and what place among your siblings are you?

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Postby Loobie » Wed Sep 19, 2007 1:42 pm

I am the youngest of 2 by 2 years. My Mom and Dad were both 24 when they had me, so they weren't older. I was asked about Scarlet Fever early on by my neuro., but I thought it was just part of a line of a lot of questions. He may sense a connection also. I go in for my last MRI on 10/2 and I'll see if he has any info.

That is really (besides the MS obviously) the only health situation I've ever had besides the usual colds and flu and the like. I was prone to sinus infections before I started using a NETI pot, but I've really been healthy as a horse besides that one childhood illness and my current situation.
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Postby Lyon » Wed Sep 19, 2007 1:57 pm

Loobie wrote:I was asked about Scarlet Fever early on by my neuro., but I thought it was just part of a line of a lot of questions. He may sense a connection also. I go in for my last MRI on 10/2 and I'll see if he has any info.
Thanks Lew, (I think I misspelled earlier)
That would be interesting to hear. Otherwise I have never heard or read of any kind of link.
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Postby cheerleader » Wed Sep 19, 2007 7:18 pm

OK, since I started this topic, I somehow feel responsible to tie up the Scarlet Fever tangent... :)

Scarlet fever is a bacterial infection, caused by strep. Back in the day, it sometimes progressed into rheumatic fever (which my grandmother had-and then developed a rheumatic heart) The bacteria caused the immune system to attack the heart and other organs. Acute rheumatic fever has been linked to MS- like complications, but we don't see this is most places, since it can be treated with antibiotics...There may very well be a link to MS.

I'm more curious about enteroviruses...which live in the host stomach, are not hindered by stomach acid, replicate there and hide out in the stomach cells. Dr. John Chia began studying these viruses when his son Andrew developed Chronic Fatigue Syndrome in '97. He focused on CFS, because he wanted to help his son. This week he and his son published their results. These viruses can live for years in the host before the immune system starts to malfunction. Chia has taken it as far as CFS...but perhaps another manifestation could be MS.

Here's a link to the Chia article

http://press.psprings.co.uk/jcp/september/cp50054.pdf

Just wondering if there are any other stomach enterovirus believers out there-

Cheers,
AC
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Postby Lyon » Wed Sep 19, 2007 7:28 pm

Hi ac,
Thanks for the info, sorry about hijacking your thread!
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Postby cheerleader » Wed Sep 19, 2007 7:35 pm

Hi Bob-
No worries! I've been lurking on the boards for months, since my husband's dx last March. I've learned so much from everyone here...yourself included! I know you're a caretaker, like me. As a newbie, I have a ton'o respect for everyone searching for answers.
Tangents are appreciated.
Best,
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Postby AllyB » Thu Sep 20, 2007 1:59 am

Hi All

Since tangents are ok....I also am of the "iron gut" genre like Lew, apart from a bit of GERD now and then. I can count on one hand the amount of tummy upsets I have had in my life - I tend to get strange things that docs can't diagnose and I end up arguing with them.

However, as a RN, I worked as a midwife in a rural hospital here in Africa in the early/mid '90's. I picked up a weird infection that caused low grade temp, night sweats and other odd symptoms. When they were trying to diagnose me, one of the things they looked for was TB, as it is rife amonsgt the population I was caring for.
The standard test for TB is a mantoux, where they put a tiny amount of live attenuated baccilus sub-cut in your arm and watch for the local reaction. No reaction means you need to be vaccinated, a reaction of a certain size means you are infected and need to be treated - I think it was supposed to be 14 - 18 mm (like a little rashy/blister thing).

I, being the weird freaky thing I am, had a reaction that involved my whole lower arm - very painful cellulitis. They sent me to a physician, who was convinced that the other docs had done it wrong, so he did it again - boom! An even bigger reaction. I was then sent to the medical school to be examined by the microbiology Prof, who decided I was hyper-immune to TB, and I was sent on my way.

Then, when my bladder cancer was diagnosed when I was 30 (1997), the standard treatment following surgery was installations of BCG (TB vaccine) into the bladder. I mentioned to my Onco my previous weird reactions to the Mantoux, so she decided to do another one before commencing treatment (thank God, as she beiieves she would have killed me if she had gone ahead and given it).

I had such a bad reaction - this time my entire arm was hugely swollen and red and hot. I had a fever of 41C, enlarged lymph nodes etc - I was very sick and was hospitalised! I still have the scar on my arm from it - 10 years later.

My MS appeared shortly after my chemo finished (the chemo probably suppressed it - chemo commenced straight after third very bad reaction, finished in mid 1998, and MS popped up early 1999), and I do believe that there is a link there for me. My immune system was sent haywire by these repeated tests/vaccinations and I suspect this triggered my MS...

Sorry, no entero-viruses, but at least I have been told I will never have TB! And it does kind of lend some anecdotal credence to the infection/immune response (hyper)/vaccination theory. Not very scientific of me, but still:

Interesting.......

Hope you are ok with the tangent.

Regards
Al
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Postby TwistedHelix » Thu Sep 20, 2007 5:34 am

Hi cheerleader,
This is a subject that I'm very interested in: the digestive system has often been considered a culprit with regard to MS and other maybe-autoimmune diseases. The condition of intestinal permeability, (leaky gut), has been discussed in this forum before, but not for a while. Apparently a very high proportion of people with MS have a leaky gut, and the drug Zonulin can have a remarkable effect, but I've heard no mention of it recently.

Here's a few links to some information on the subject:
http://www.msrc.co.uk/index.cfm?fuseact ... pageid=737

http://www.direct-ms.org/pdf/LeakyGutGe ... akyGut.pdf

http://www.healthy.net/scr/Article.asp?Id=7689

Or you could just try Googling something like " MS leaky gut".
You'll see that with this condition it can be possible for entire food proteins, as well as toxins and viral and bacterial peptides, to directly enter the bloodstream and trigger an immune response – if they happen to resemble human peptides, it's easy to see how autoimmunity can result. I seem to remember that one of my first posts on this forum was a completes speculation on my part: that neural stem cells, (which are present in the nasal mucosa), could make their way via post-nasal drip into the digestive system, somehow survive the journey through the stomach, and then enter the bloodstream thanks to a leaky small intestine to create an immune response against neural tissue. A bit of a flight of fancy, but I like tangents!
Dom
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Postby cheerleader » Thu Sep 20, 2007 8:51 am

Hi Dom-
Thanks for the "leaky gut links" -not to be confused with "haggis" :)

Turns out that Zonulin is the signaling protein that opens and closes the intestinal cells, allowing for leakage. AT-1001 is in Phase II clinical trial as a Zonulin antagonist for Celiac disease. Will keep my eyes on this drug-

http://www.albatherapeutics.com/Default.aspx?tabid=115

best,
AC
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Postby Murphibrown » Thu Sep 20, 2007 2:50 pm

Hi! I am signing in for the first time today because I found this line of discussion interesting. I was diagnosed in 2004 and my MS Dr. told me that I most likely have had it for more than 15 years. I had an unknown virus in about 1985 and then Rhumatic Fever in about 1990. I have had significant GERD for many years and at one time was treated with antibiotics to try to kill whatever was causing all of my stomach issues.

I used to say if there was a bug out there, I would catch it... Sinus infections and Bronchitis were yearly events for me when I lived in the Northeast.

It seems to fit with the thinking that MS is related to a virus of sorts.
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