It might seem surprising that a mouth bacterium has been implicated in Alzheimer’s disease (see main story). But it wouldn’t be the first time an illness has turned out to have an unexpected infectious origin.
The iconic case is stomach ulcers, once thought to be caused by stress or excess acid, and treated with acid-lowering medications. Then Australian doctor Barry Marshall showed that a stomach bacterium called Helicobacter pylori was behind them, a feat that won him a Nobel prize.
Streptococcus bacteria, which cause tonsillitis and “strep throat”, are suspected of triggering obsessive-compulsive disorder in children. The thinking is that the immune system’s attack on the bacteria cross-reacts with certain human proteins, causing an autoimmune attack against the person’s own brain tissue.
Bacteria aren’t the only ones under suspicion. There are indications that a virus is behind some cases of obesity. And one study has found that people with antibodies to a single-celled brain parasite called Toxoplasma gondii, which is spread in cat faeces, are more likely to develop schizophrenia. Some people think up to a third of cases could be caused by infection with T. gondii.
But not all purported links bear fruit. Twenty years ago, there was great excitement when a bacterium that can cause pneumonia lung infections was found in the blood vessel plaques that cause heart disease. But giving people antibiotics to kill this bug didn’t help reduce heart attacks. Clare Wilson[/quote
https://www.newscientist.com/article/21 ... o-stop-it/
Strictly health issues. Anything that helps us stay healthy or affects us personally.
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The same germ that causes gum inflammation,gingivitis, might be giving you Alzheimer's.
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