View Full Version : Inflammation markers in Schizophrenia & Scoliosis

11-19-2009, 09:26 AM
New research from Sweden indicates that the brain's immune system is activated in people with Schizophrenia. This reminded me of Dr. Moreau's discovery that Osteopontin levels in children with Scoliosis are dangerously high (http://www.wipo.int/pctdb/en/wo.jsp?WO=2008119170&IA=CA2008000595&DISPLAY=DESC). Osteopontin can be a marker for both inflammation and infection.

Sciencedaily: (November 18, 2009) Immune System Activated in Schizophrenia (http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/11/091118092620.htm)

The results show that patients with recent-onset schizophrenia have raised levels of a signal substance called interleukin-1beta, which can be released in the presence of inflammation. In the healthy control patients, this substance was barely measurable.

"This suggests that the brain's immune defence system is activated in schizophrenia," says Professor Göran Engberg, who led the study. "It now remains to be seen whether there is an underlying infection or whether the immune system is triggered by some other means."

In related news
NY Times: Study Shows Role of Time and Place of Birth in Schizophrenia (http://www.nytimes.com/1999/02/25/us/study-shows-role-of-time-and-place-of-birth-in-schizophrenia.html?sec=health&&n=Top%2fReference%2fTimes%20Topics%2fOrganizations %2fN%2fNew%20England%20Journal%20of%20Medicine)

The study, published in today's issue of The New England Journal of Medicine, found that having a parent or a sibling with schizophrenia increased a person's chances of developing the illness by about sevenfold to ninefold. But people who are born in the winter months, in particular in February or March, or who are born in urban areas, are also slightly more likely to develop schizophrenia than people born at other times of the year or in rural regions.

People born in Copenhagen, Denmark's capital, were 2.4 times as likely to develop schizophrenia as those born in rural areas, the study found. February and March were the months of birth associated with the highest risk; August and September were associated with the lowest risk.

But wait there's more!
Schizophrenia Susceptibility Genes Directly Implicated in the Life Cycles of Pathogens: Cytomegalovirus, Influenza, Herpes simplex, Rubella, and Toxoplasma gondii (http://schizophreniabulletin.oxfordjournals.org/cgi/content/abstract/sbn054)

Many genes implicated in schizophrenia can be related to glutamatergic transmission and neuroplasticity, oligodendrocyte function, and other families clearly related to neurobiology and schizophrenia phenotypes. Others appear rather to be involved in the life cycles of the pathogens implicated in the disease.

11-22-2009, 08:43 AM
Almost missed this Dingo. Interesting post. What caught my eye is the link between herpes simplex and schizophrenia. Am I correct that herpes simplex, as well as shingles - have been traced to a dormant chickenpox virus that resides at the base of the spine and may surface at any time (even among those vaccinated for the virus). Seems I read that long ago. If true, isn't that interesting? The chickenpox virus and scoliosis, both having been around since the dawn of time ... any connection to IS? I wonder.

11-22-2009, 10:39 AM
Yep, once Herpes (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Herpes_zoster) sneaks into the body it can stay forever.

"Once an episode of chickenpox has resolved, the virus (herpes) is not eliminated from the body but can go on to cause shingles—an illness with very different symptoms—often many years after the initial infection."

Evidence is mounting that Herpes is a significant cause of Alzheimer's disease. (Cold Sore Virus Linked To Alzheimer's Disease: New Treatment, Or Even Vaccine Possible (http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081207134109.htm)) It's also been linked to Cerebral Palsy. (Cerebral palsy 'infection link' (http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/4587112.stm)) There is no obvious reason that a microbe like Herpes couldn't be the cause or a contributing factor to AIS.

You might have read the other day that scientists examined Egyption mummies from 3,500 years ago and about half had evidence of heart disease. (Heart Disease Found in Egyptian Mummies (http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/11/091117161017.htm))

This has lead some people to speculate that heart disease is simply a normal part of being human. Maybe but I doubt it. More than likely this is evidence that heart disease (like Alzhemeimer's and many other common diseases) is in some way triggered by microbes.

And no surprise there is some evidence that infections do play a role in heart attacks. (Pneumococcal Vaccine Associated With 50 Percent Lower Risk Of Heart Attacks (http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/10/081006180506.htm))

“After a number of confounding and modifying variables were taken into account, the odds of having received a vaccination against S. pneumonia in the group who had experienced myocardial infarction was about half that in the control group,” write Dr. Danielle Pilon and coauthors from the University of Sherbrooke and McMaster University. “Moreover, this association appeared stronger and the benefit appeared to increase with time since exposure to the vaccine.”

11-22-2009, 10:41 AM
#1 - I am in no way advocating the treatment in the following discussion, but rather only exploring the theory and the reasons (or not) we may wish to explore the theory.

From the Scoliosis Tree http://www.erikamaude.com/causes.html

Some people believe in the D. Gary Young theory that suggests Scoliosis is a virus or bacteria that lies dormant or active along the spine. He says that these pathogens then create inflammation, which contorts and disfigures the spinal column. (For this reason, many people who use rods only find later the operation did not help, as the virus was still intact within the spine. This means if the virus activates again, it could take the rods and spinal cord out of alignment together!) As the virus progresses, it creates a greater disturbance to the bone and tissues. After several months or years of suffering from this bacterial-viral invasion, the back wearies from holding the body up and the tense muscles that have suffered from mal-adjusting to the problem, cause the person excruciating pain.

Ok ... the theory seems plausible in light of what science has revealed regarding the chickenpox, herpes, shingles connection over the last century.

What if viral inflammation plays a larger part in IS than we understand? It is factual that NSAID medication brings relief to those with painful IS symptoms. NSAIDs are anti-inflammatories.

Again - I really don't wish to turn the discussion into a Young bashing party - but rather an exploration into a theory that may be plausible (or not), leaving the theorist completely out of the loop. Do studies into this exist either in or outside this country? I would like to know. And if not - I would like to know why not.

11-22-2009, 11:13 AM

I don't think Dr. Young is well respected (but I could be wrong) but generally speaking what he is describing sounds like a cousin to Polio which is known to cause Scoliosis.

And that's the funny thing. Now we know that Scoliosis is triggered by dangerously high levels of Osteopontin. (source (http://www.wipo.int/pctdb/en/wo.jsp?WO=2008119170&IA=CA2008000595&DISPLAY=DESC)) High OPN is a risk factor for dozens of other potentially fatal diseases (Osteopontin and the skin: multiple emerging roles in cutaneous biology and pathology (http://www.mdlinx.com/allergy-immunology/news-article.cfm/2843143)) and can be a marker for both infection and inflammation. (Osteopontin Expression Correlates with Clinical Outcome in Patients with Mycobacterial Infection (http://ajp.amjpathol.org/cgi/content/abstract/157/1/37))

We already knew how Polio worked. Inflammation and potentially infection is something that scientists should have focused on from the beginning. How sad that it took 30 or 40 years to get the scientific community back on the right track.