Review Article: Are the Infectious Roots of Alzheimer’s Buried Deep in the Past?

February 26, 2017

Dr. Lawrence Broxmeyer, MD

LINK-OUT TO REVIEW ARTICLE -51778-ipjpe-3-s2-2

Citation: Broxmeyer L. Are the Infectious Roots
of Alzheimer’s Buried Deep in the Past? J Mol
Path Epidemol. 2017, 3:2.

Received: January 13, 2017; Accepted: February 20, 2017; Published: February 22,

© Under License of Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License


Recent literature shows a controversial new push to tie microorganisms to Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Study after study, in which scientists have injected human Alzheimer-diseased brain tissue into mice and other laboratory animals that later developed the disease have left little doubt that Alzheimer’s disease (AD) arises from an infectious process. By 2013 Mawanda and Wallace’s “Can Infections Cause Alzheimer’s Disease” struck down some of the commonly entertained pathogens for AD such as herpes simplex virus type 1, Chlamydia pneumoniae, and several types of spirochetes. Instead they pointed to two prime suspects for Alzheimer’s amyloid-beta deposition: “especially chronic infections like tuberculosis and leprosy.” To be sure, it was German neuropathologist Oskar Fischer of the Prague school of Neuropathology, Alzheimer’s great rival, who was the first to suggest that infection might be causative for Alzheimer’s. Fischer’s credentials: he was the co-discoverer of Alzheimer’s disease. His suspected germ was the Streptothrix, today classified as an Actinomycetes, a rare central nervous system pathogen which at the time was so constantly and consistently mistaken for tuberculosis that Choppen-Jones suggested that TB be called tuberculomycosis. And Just ten years before Oskar Fischer found Actinomycosis-like forms in Alzheimer’s cerebral plaque, Babèş and immunologist Levaditi reported in “On the Actinomycotic Shape of the Tuberculous Bacilli” that Fischer’s typical Actinomyces-like clusters [Drüsen] with clubs appeared in the tissue of rabbits inoculated with tubercle bacilli beneath the dura mater of their brains. Investigators who supported and subsequenly followed up on Fischer’s Alzheimer’s germ are also discussed.

Keywords: Alzheimer’s disease, Infectious Cause of Alzheimer’s Disease, Oskar Fischer, Alois Alzheimer, Neurodegenerative Disease, Neurotuberculosis


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