Herpes Infection itself is an incurable ailment accountable for never-ending psychological and physical afflictions. Besides, Alzheimer disease makes the situation even worse. The fear gets to an extent level when clinical findings suggest a strong correlation between Alzheimer’s and Herpes.
Preliminary findings did not support the theory that Alzheimer’s disease could be a response to a pathogen like the herpes virus.
Unlike preliminary researches, Neoteric clinical findings demonstrate the strong evidence of herpes virus involvement in Alzheimer’s disease. Clinical trials suggest that the intrusion of the herpes virus in the brain makes an individual highly vulnerable to Alzheimer’s Disease (A form of Dementia).
An Introduction – Alzheimer’s Disease
Alzheimer’s disease is a deterioration of the brain’s neurological tissues causing a severe form of forgetfulness. The brain tissues gradually start deteriorating, which ultimately cause a decline in cognitive function.
The initial stages of Alzheimer’s disease typically reveal no signs, but overtime exacerbation makes it a life-threatening condition.
What causes Alzheimer’s disease is still a matter of in-depth scrutiny. Most numbers of Alzheimer’s diseases don’t present any reason except in some cases where genetic factors involved.
Now scientists managed to find Herpes Virus a cause for Alzheimer’s disease. The numbers may distress you as available scientific data points out herpes simplex virus a reason for 50% of Alzheimer’s cases.
Some other suspicious factors that might be causing such a dreaded ailment are following.
- Age Factor
- Genetic Connection
- Environmental Factors
- Tau Protein Alteration
Evidence That Supports The Theory Of Alzheimer’s And Herpes Connection
Ruth Frances Itzhaki postulates herpes virus involvement in Alzheimer’s disease. She is a Molecular Neurobiology professor from the university of manchester, united kingdom.
The likelihood of Alzheimer’s disease increases in the presence of apolipoprotein E gene (APOE-e4 gene), says Ruth Frances Itzhaki. Itzhaki further investigates that herpes virus presence with the APOE-e4 gene makes people even more vulnerable to Alzheimer’s Herpes.
Before producing the statement as mentioned earlier at journal Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience, Ruth Frances Itzhaki analyzed various scientific database primarily National Health Insurance Research Database Of Taiwan.
The point also noted that having herpes virus1 alone does not make you susceptible to Alzheimer’s disease. In most of the cases, herpes virus needs the support of a specific gene apolipoprotein E (APOE-e4).
Available data also postulates that herpes virus reactivation in patients with APOE-e4 gene causes more brain cells damage compared to those who don’t have APOE-e4 gene.
Ruth Frances Itzhaki found more than 150 publications. All of those publishings stated that the Human Herpes Virus with apolipoprotein E (APOE-e4 gene) increases the risk of Alzheimer’s disease by manifold.
APOE-e4 may be a culprit in inducing Human Herpesvirus reactivation, Says S. Pratap Singh, an Indo-American Physician.
Amyloid Plaques (Amyloid Beta), Human Herpes Virus and Alzheimer’s Disease
Amyloid Plaque is a collection of protein that prohibits the micro-organism ability to cause harm to brain cells. Our internal defense mechanism (Immune System) produces Amyloid Plaques in response to herpes virus reactivation.
The immune system produces this protein for the sake of our good health, but unfortunately, it turns into a nightmare for our brain.
Amyloid Plaques mistakenly harm our brain cells and cause the blockage of communication between two neurons.
The accumulation of Amyloid plaques generally seen if there is Alzheimer’s disease present.
Clinical trials found that Amyloid plaques help Human Herpes Simplex Virus to cause abnormalities e.g., forgetfulness, inability to perform simple day to day tasks, and difficulty in speaking.
Acute HZV (Herpes Zoster Virus) also adding fear as it is found to be a significant cause of Developing Dementia.
Studies That Is Worth Taking Into Account
Specialists have performed research at Icahn School of Medicine at Mt. Sinai to discover the role of HSV in Alzheimer’s. Whatever they found was staggering. They came with an observation that Herpes virus strains HHV-6A and HHV-7 are plentiful in Alzheimer’s cerebrum.
Adding more to it, HHV-6A was found connected with Amyloidosis, Cognitive Decline, and Senile Dementia.
Dipping to another study where research done on mice revealed an undesirable outcome. Mice engineered to develop Amyloid plaques abruptly selected for the completion of this study.
During this study, experts infected half of the mice with HSV-1; half of them not given HSV strain.
Mice not received HSV strain took numerous months to show Neurodegenerative and Cognitive Decline. But, Herpes Simplex Virus-infected mice showed the same symptoms within 48 hours.
A study evaluated that people with HSV-1 is 2.5 times at higher risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease than general people. This study was conducted on a large scale in Taiwan. Nearly 33000 people were enrolled in this Evaluation.
Alzheimer’s Herpes Management With Anti-Herpetic Medicines: How Supportive Is It?
The Alzheimer’s disease that correlates to Human Herpes Virus-1 needs a superior treatment with an appropriate regimen. Various scientific data support the usage of herpes antivirals in managing such ailment. Acyclovir, Valacyclovir, and Zovirax are few FDA approved Herpes Antivirals that are prominently used in herpes management.
Ruth Frances Itzhaki found during her research that Acyclovir and Valacyclovir curb and keep checking the level of Amyloid Beta (Aβ). The less Amyloid-beta present in your body, the less become your chances to develop Alzheimer’s disease.
Tau protein secretion highly relies on Herpesvirus replication and how severe the herpes infection is. Acyclovir precludes the Herpes virus replication, and the result comes in the inhibition of Tau Protein production.
A study executed in 2017 by several experts found that Herpes Zoster Virus (HZV) is also a responsible cause for Alzheimer’s disease. However, HZV only increases the chance if there is a severe case of Herpes Zoster Infection.
The research also indicated that Herpes antivirals could substantially be used for the management of Alzheimer’s disease.
Though, Ruth Frances Itzhaki’s research indicates the involvement of Herpes Infection in Alzheimer’s disease but the exact mechanism of how herpes virus induce Alzheimer’s is still a matter of scrutiny.
Scientists are still trying to perceive why the APOE-e4 gene typically present in most of Alzheimer’s Brain.
The questions are many that need to be answered to identify herpes virus correlation with Alzheimer’s disease. Experts are arduously endeavoring to find the relevant answer to the questions as mentioned earlier.
The only scientific explanation that holds credibility is, antivirals are safe, effective, and well-tolerated for Alzheimer’s herpes.