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H. Pylori/Multiple Sclerosis Study Assistance Needed

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dhataharris
Posts: 1
Joined: Fri Aug 28, 2020 12:50 am

H. Pylori/Multiple Sclerosis Study Assistance Needed

Post by dhataharris »

:ugeek: Greetings All, :ugeek:

I would like to give special thanks to Elina and Dr. Tay for sharing this forum with me. I send you Happy Greetings from Atlanta, Georgia. By way of introduction, my name is Dhata and I contacted the Marshall Centre a few days ago, with hopes to raise funds via kickstarter for a research project to study the relationship between Multiple Sclerosis and H. Pylori. I thought, what better group to perform the research than the 1982 discovery superstars who identified this problematic bacteria?

So how did I get here and what do I want? I am an auditor by profession, so I know how to trace the root cause of problems, but unfortunately did not pursue a medical distinction outside of passing Advanced Placement Biology in High School. :D

But I did experience my first M.S. symptoms at the end of 2004 while doing a Military Fitness Test for the Army. I was a big athletic guy who would get a maximum score on the push-ups and sit-ups, but this time my legs went numb somewhere around lap #3 of 8 for the two mile run. It took 4 years of different specialists until my Primary Care Physician's Assistant followed the breadcrumbs to determine the presence of a demyelinating disease after sending me for a scan. Went for an MRI at the neurologist and had a spinal tap. Yay? Thanksgiving of 2008, I learned that I had M.S. and wasn't just a lazy soldier who failed the running portion of the military physical fitness test. The part about no known cause or cure sprung me into action by way of what I do best, research. I had to retire from Corporate America in 2011 on disability as the brain fog, pain, foot drag, and intolerance to heat were too much to perform at my best for the company. Backstory for long intro done. Now enter the science and what I want and can offer.

Being on disability for 3 years gives a person time to accomplish many things. I researched M.S. in all of my spare time and with the right disease modifying drug, was able to return to Corporate America in 2014. During my "retirement" I had ballooned up to 300+ pounds.

At the end of 2016, my company started offering weight loss surgery as a benefit. I qualified and opted for the gastric sleeve surgery. Essentially, they cut out approximately 80% of my stomach.

This is the good part if you want to skip the backstory above and see the study particulars. The following information is not intended to treat, diagnose, prevent, or cure any disease.

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American painter Bob Ross suggested that some of the most beautiful things we create in life are "Happy Little Accidents". My gastric sleeve surgery was scheduled for June of 2017, but a few happy little accidents happened along the way.

Accident #1. In February 2017, the M.S. drug therapy for which I had been a study patient, had to be removed from the market because of complications discovered in a few people in the U.K. Whenever this happens, there is a six month period where you can't take any new drug therapies so the "old drug" can get out of your system. That is hard for M.S. patients because without those drugs, their condition can deteriorate quickly. This was the last time I took any disease modifying drugs for M.S.

Accident #2 Because the gastric sleeve surgery removes such a large portion of the stomach, it is of the utmost importance to ensure there is nothing that can put holes in the remaining 20%, aka "H. Pylori." On March 29th of 2017, I had an endoscopy which confirmed the presence of H. Pylori. The following antibiotic regimen was prescribed by my surgeon: Omerprazole 20 mg po BID, Amoxicillin 1 gram BID, Clarithromycin 500 mg BID for 10 days The diagnosis of H. Pylori, of course had me cross reference every entry on the web to see if there was a documented causal relationship with M.S. When I found a study posted on the National Institutes of Health's website showing that out of 44 M.S. patients, 86.4% had active H. Pylori infection, my auditor spidey senses rounded up to 90% to extrapolate that this is statistically relevant. See the link here https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4480172/

Accident #3 I completed my regimen of antibiotics at the beginning of May 2017. By this time, I was off disease modifying drugs for a solid 3 months. Still had a few symptoms of M.S. with exposure to high heat, stress, or upset stomach. However, the duration of symptoms became negligible to the point I had to question whether they were there at all. Georgia Summers had been debilitating for me in prior years. I couldn't be sure that I wasn't experiencing a placebo affect learning the potential correlation between H. Pylori and M.S. Upon my last MRI with my neurologist, Dr. English in June 2017, he noted that there was a slight reduction in lesions around my spinal cord. Previous MRI's showed plaques on my brain and spinal cord. I was still reluctant to call this my first piece of evidence, but a happy coincidence for sure. :)

Accident #4 Glad you're still following along. I'm an auditor and was a study patient for the M.S. drug Zinbryta (daclizumab) for several years. Trying to pair this elephant of a story down to bite size portions. I want to present you with the data, not the Dhata ;) My gastric sleeve surgery was June 27, 2017. No complications and very little pain, other than some treatable gas pain which resolved by July 1st. On July 4th, 2017, I volunteered for the Peachtree Road Race to hand out waters and other bottled refreshments at the finish line. According to my pedometer, I walked about 4.3 miles for that event on a day described by the news as a toasty 91 degrees. I was super sweaty, but no foot drag. I'm sure the heat index made it feel hotter than 91. A few years prior I had done Walk MS, which is only a 5k walk and had the tell-tale foot drag after the first 3 quarters of a mile :cry: Something was different beyond the placebo effect.

Accident #5 In the auditing world, this is the point where we need to add to our sample size to extrapolate how systemic a finding is. These have been happy little guesses/coincidences to this point, but not much data to back it up. I count myself as #45 to the earlier study listed on the NIH website with 44 M.S. patients as the control. My aunt Vicki has had M.S. since before disease modifying drugs were made available. The first test of agreed upon factors for M.S. is that there must be a genetic predisposition. She's my mother's sister, so the case for genetic predisposition is met. Secondly, there is consensus that there is some kind of trigger. For my hypothesis, I considered my Aunt Vicki to be study participant #46. Because I'm her favorite nephew, she asked her doctor to schedule the test. There was some pushback for a few months before the doctor agreed to administer the test, which he said was highly unlikely to have a positive result because there isn't adequate data. She was officially diagnosed to have h. pylori in 2018. She couldn't take the same antibiotic regimen due to concomitant drug interactions. Her reduction in symptoms was negligible, unlike mine even before the surgery date :( I would like this study to get answers for everyone. I have not been on MS medication since 2017 and have not experienced MS symptoms since then. Why?

Questions to be asked/addressed by the study

1. Is there a chronology for M.S. triggered by H. Pylori Infection?

I believe my infection with H. Pylori may have come from my military training in Egypt close to 9/15/2001. A study performed in a rural area of Egypt found that 91.7% of its residents were infected with the bacteria. While taking pictures with other soldiers in front of the pyramids, an Egyptian tour guide placed his hat on my head and that could have been a source of transmission. Person to person is the assumed method of transmission for the bacteria, as the exact method remains unverified. If that was the infection point, it may suggest a 3 year autoimmune triggering period before I experienced my first M.S. symptom. Was I just initially asymptomatic with Benign MS during that period? More importantly, not one soldier is screened for h. pylori after coming back from tours in high infection areas. I hope there is enough interest in selecting this study to consider post-return screening.

2. Why are there conflicting results between whether h. pylori is protective against M.S. or a trigger?

A second unrelated study of 286 Egyptian children showed an H. Pylori infection rate of 72.38%. Contrasted against the 91.7% of adults with H. Pylori infection from the previous study, one could make an argument that early infection with H. Pylori can limit (help protect against) severe symptoms experienced as an adult, much in the same way early infection with chickenpox is protective against a severe immune response as an adult to exposure to the same varicella zoster virus. A study of 5 Egyptian centers highlighted a prevalence of MS in Egypt to be only 14.1 people out of 100,000. Is this because of a lack of genetic predisposition or is there a window of H. Pylori infection that acts as an immune barrier to triggering of MS as a reaction? Now that there is a vaccine for chickenpox, researchers have found that kids who were vaccinated were at a 78% lower risk for developing shingles. Wouldn't that be amazing if those results could be extrapolated to M.S. by being vaccinated against H. Pylori infection? A study by Optum suggests that the annual cost of MS for the U.S. alone is $28 billion.

3. Why are my results different than my aunt's?

We both have MS and eradicated h. pylori from our system. Did the choice of antibiotics play a factor? Did the fact that Disease Modifying Drugs were available from the time of my diagnosis help me? None were available when she was originally diagnosed with MS. Is the spread of inflammation injury from MS/h. pylori similar to the unpredictable path of a metastasizing cancer? Is that why my aunt's plaques are mostly in her brain, and mine were in brain and spinal cord? Could comparison of my T and B cells against those of someone (44 new MS patients) with active H. Pylori infection and M.S. yield any answers to how the toxins from H. Pylori are triggering the autoimmune response? The Vagus does impact both T and B cell response. Does the fact that 80% of my stomach was removed suggest that the portion with chronic damage from H. Pylori was taken out with it? Spoiler Alert The Ancient Greek physician Hippocrates may have been right almost 2500 years ago saying that "all disease begins in the gut." Many surgeons sever the vagus nerve on purpose while completing the gastric sleeve. Mine did as well. Was dismantling the brain gut connection what ultimately allowed me to enter what I would like to suggest is a Sixth type of Multiple Sclerosis which would be newly identified as Sustained Remission Multiple Sclerosis (SRMS)?

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That is the study proposal. I welcome all feedback. Would love to have the Marshall Centre consider this project for their upcoming research. Tell me the proposed cost and I will find the money.

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