April 30, 2022
Guest Blogs Topics: Richard Horowitz, Lyme & COVID; Robert Bransfield, Lyme & Mental Illness; Scott Commins, Alpha gal; Daniel Cameron, Tick-Borne Diseases; Sandy Berenbaum, Lyme & Kids; Thomas Platts Mills, Alpha gal. 
A different blog will be posted every five days throughout the month beginning May 1. Each blog will appear on the LDA website home page as well as the Guest Blog Page. Read more.
One of the greatest champions for Lyme and tick-borne disease patients is gone. A man of great talents and sterling character - a man with a presence. Dr. Nick Harris was founder of IGeneX Labs and an early developer of Lyme tests, which undoubtedly saved the lives of hundreds of thousands of patients across the world with Lyme & tick-borne diseases. He not only gave patients hope but also gave them tangible solutions for their diagnostic dilemmas.

He was a man of tremendous courage who butted heads with the self-proclaimed "Experts of Lyme" whose agendas prevented so many from receiving a diagnosis of Lyme disease and thus subsequent treatment. Dr. Harris had no fear. He risked his livelihood and reputation going against powerful organizations - even the government - who tried many times and in many ways, to shut him down due to his cutting edge Lyme testing and while working with his lab on other diseases. Read more.
Nick Harris, PhD
In this mini review article, researchers examine the important and potential role of antibiotic tolerance in Borrelia spp. (a Lyme disease bacteria) and Post Treatment Lyme Disease Syndrome (PTLDS).
Many hypotheses have been proposed and studies have been conducted in an attempt to better determine the potential causes of PTLDS. Studies have examined autoimmunity, cross-reactivity, molecular mimicry, coinfections, and Borrelia tolerance to many antimicrobials. Read more.
LDA is sharing this Columbia announcement with clinicians and investigators from academic institutions.
We are happy to announce that the Clinical Trials Network for Lyme and Tick- Borne Diseases (CTN), which was established with a grant from the Steven & Alexandra Cohen Foundation to Columbia University, is launching the second round of Pilot Study Proposal submissions April 10 - June 15, 2022. The CTN’s goal is to support the conduct of small-scale human studies related to the
treatment of Lyme Disease or other tick-related diseases. These pilot studies will help determine whether further research is warranted. Pilot studies generally assess safety and feasibility as primary goals; this data can then be used to support future NIH and Foundation grant submissions. Read more.

Thomas Piekut, et al., published an article in the Journal of Integrative Neuroscience reviewing the important role of infectious agents in the development of Alzheimer’s disease (AD) in hopes of prompting new pathogen-based dementia research.

The article cites reports showing the possible ways that several viruses, bacteria,
and parasites may factor in to cognitive decline as it relates to AD. The authors speculate that microbes may generate pathological developments in the brain that mirror and/or provoke molecular hallmarks of AD such as the accumulation of Aβ peptides and tau hyperphosphorylation. Moreover, the researchers indicate that the sheer incidence of infectious agents is believed to provoke local and systemic
inflammatory responses which causes damage to cells in addition to neural decline. Read more.

A case report published in JBJS Case Connector describes the atypical presentation of Lyme disease in three pediatric patients. All patients presented with “acute calf or knee pain, calf swelling, and a ruptured popliteal cyst.” A popliteal cyst, also known as a Baker’s cyst, is described by the Mayo Clinic as “a fluid-filled cyst that causes a bulge and a feeling of tightness behind your knee.” Read more.
In order to give early access to findings, Nature has just published an unedited version of a manuscript describing the prophylactic and treatment benefit of
N-0358 (small molecule compound) for the COVID virus and its variants. The authors state that although widespread vaccination against COVID has occurred, emerging variants of concern (VOC) have reduced vaccine efficacy. Read more.
James L. Occi, PhD
Over the last three years, James L. Occi, PhD, has been the lead author of four
published articles regarding ticks. His work provides a basis for moving the field of tick-borne diseases forward by contributing scientific findings that are necessary in understanding the spread of ticks, as well as the diseases they carry and transmit, in the Northeast.

Dr. Occi has been on LDA's Scientific & Professional Advisory Board since its inception in 1999. He is an invaluable resource and has provided lectures, blogs,
Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry published a study using mass spectrometry-based proteome profiling and parallel reaction monitoring to detect multiple pathogens in black-legged ticks collected from the Southern Tier of New York. Analysis from five combined ticks showed high confidence for
identifying 2,052 tick proteins and 41 pathogen proteins. Results showed high peptide spectral match counts for both Rickettsia (8/10 ticks) and Borrelia species (5/10 ticks); 3/10 ticks carried both pathogens. Lower counts were found for other less common pathogens including Anaplasma phagocytophilum. Only one tick had no detectable bacteria. Read more.
Blacklegged Deer Tick (Ixodes scapularis)
May is Lyme Disease Awareness Month - Congressman Christopher H. Smith (NJ-04), in his Congressman Chris Smith Reports Home 2022 newsletter, warns the public of Lyme disease, especially as the weather warms up and exposure to ticks increases. Lyme and tick-borne illnesses are exploding in the U.S., and NJ is highly endemic. However, most federal
officials do not fully understand the risk and catastrophic consequences of Lyme and tick-borne diseases, nor do they have awareness of emerging new tick-borne diseases and co-infections. The newsletter documents his 30 years of advocacy for Lyme patients after his first meeting with now LDA President, Pat Smith, who urged him in the early 1990s to push federal health policy leaders to combat Lyme. Read more.
Congressman Chris Smith
Authors of a case report describe a human fatality associated with the acute tick-borne infection, human granulocytic anaplasmosis (HGA), caused by the bacterium Anaplasma phagocytophilum. This case occurred in a resident of Vermont. The person presented with multiple comorbidities. Authors recommend that clinicians be aware of the risk factors for severe presentations of this infection and to treat expeditiously when the disease is suspected. Read more.
According to a new study published in The Journal of Clinical Investigation, a new test could help detect Lyme disease in individuals infected by Borrelia spp. pathogens sooner, which could lead to earlier effective treatment for patients. Read more.
The University of Utah Health website has reported news from the university’s Division of Microbiology and Immunology and their recent discovery of a new genetic pathway that might help to uncover why some patients develop more severe cases of Lyme disease arthritis.

Previous studies identified the association between severe Lyme arthritis and an elevated presence of interferon, which is an important regulator of the autoimmune response. However, due to its role in regulating the immune system, inhibiting its activity
would leave patients susceptible to infections. Read more.

Recent surveillance of Oklahoma ticks has detected spreading populations of Ixodes scapularis (blacklegged ticks) and pathogens not previously detected, including bacteria, protozoans, and viruses that pose a serious risk to human health. A one-step multiplex real-time reverse transcription-PCR detected tick-borne pathogens from a pool of 117 I. scapularis ticks collected from white-tailed deer. Read more.
In a new study, authors review the potential role of coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) as a supplementation to moderate the pathogenic mechanisms underlying Lyme disease symptoms; specifically mitochondrial dysfunction, oxidative stress and inflammation. CoQ10 is a “vitamin-like” substance synthesized within most human body tissues and has shown efficacy in mediating these processes. Read more.
On April 9, 2022, New York Governor, Kathy Hochul (D), granted New York licensed Nurse Practitioners (NP) the ability to practice independently when she signed the State budget into law. NPs that have greater than 36,000 hours of experience may now practice fully without a formal agreement with a medical doctor. Read more.
The Department of Defense Congressionally Directed Medical Research Program (CDMRP) published a news release alerting Lyme and tick-borne diseases researchers of anticipated FY22 monies that may become
available through the program so that they can plan for possible grant submissions. Applicants are particularly encouraged to submit applications focused on tick-borne diseases (TBD), conditions endemic to the U.S., and/or involving patients with persistent Lyme. Read more.
The Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease published a study examining 60 individuals with persistent symptoms after Lyme disease. Trauma history, mental and physical symptoms, and functional status were measured with validated methods. Results suggest a history of trauma has a small to medium effect on symptom severity. Read more.
The Field & Stream article, “Veterinarians Issue High Tick-Borne Disease Warning for 2022,” (Ken Perrotte 3.3.22) reports that the prevalence of Lyme disease is expected to be higher in 2022 and warns dog owners of the increased risk cited by Veterinary Practice News. Read more.
Science Direct published the case report of a Massachusetts child who was diagnosed and treated in the ER with “isolated Lyme radiculoneuritis” (inflammation of the spinal nerve roots). The child’s symptoms included fever and allodynia (severe sensitivity or heightened pain response) of the upper back. Isolated radiculoneuritis is considered to be a rare presentation of early disseminated Lyme disease, however, authors state that this syndrome is “likely underrecognized.” Read more.
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