A New Decade of ME Research: The 11th Invest in ME International ME Conference 2016
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Can you only have Mitochondrial Dysfunction in your head?

Discussion in 'General ME/CFS Discussion' started by Prefect, May 15, 2017.

  1. Prefect

    Prefect Senior Member

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    Most of my issues are in my head (lol psyches would love this).

    But a lot of my fatigue and sensory problems are in my head and when I'm completing mental tasks.

    My body feels fine and I can exercise with no consequence whatsoever.

    While looking for causes I've also wondered if you can have Mito damage ONLY in your head?

    I've been thinking about experimenting with MitoQ to see if it helps, but before I do that I was wondering if it's a silly option if my body feels fine.

    Supplementing takes so long you have to be selective and surgical about it, or you'll waste moths down the wrong path.

    Thanks,
     
  2. SilverbladeTE

    SilverbladeTE Senior Member

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    Somewhere near Glasgow, Scotland
    no
    there are several types of mitochondria iirc but the most likely explanations for mental problems with illnesses like ME and soem others are that SEVERAL problems caused by the main illness affect the brain and central nervous system

    poor heart function/blood volume/pumping reduces blood flow round the brain
    the brain burns up 1/3rd of our energy intake, that is an ENORMOUS amount of power drain form your over all supply

    the hypothalamus pituitary adrenal glands are affected,
    these have many complex and peculiar interactions
    for example I have almost no testosterone output because my pituitary gland is malfunctioning, so my testes production fo testosterone is turned off
    this has major impact on over all bodily health

    reactive hypoglycaemia seems a not uncommon problem with ME patients, so when we eat sugars or perhaps certain types of starch, our body goes whacky and reduces available blood sugar
    I wonder if this is an immune system trigger to deal with infections, by starving them of sugar to feed on, that is wrongly triggered by whatever ME exactly is?

    and other things as well

    one effect of ALL these things is to cause me to be obese and deconditioned as I cannot exercise etc
    this causes even more reduction in bodily efficiency

    so if say it gets a 10 to 20% reduction in the necessary blood/nutrients to the brain, that is a real major reduction in what our brains can do

    also, since there is good evidence for autoimmune issues it maybe the brain and central nervous system are being damaged, after all what many KEPT forgetting thanks t the psych bastards, is autopsies over the years have shown damage in the brain stem where something, probably autoimmune action, has inflamed and damaged sensory nerves coming back to the brain
    so they are probably "shorting out" much like an electrical or electronic device
    this would explain some of the awful sensory things we suffer


    so, brain mitochondria MAY be messed up for us, but there's a whole LOT of other things that will cause us serious mental problems from reading to balance, to false sensory inputs (pain etc I have lost most of my sense of smell and yet smell some odd smells, ghastly, dont' smell like ANYTHING I've ever encountered in my life, but very unreal from things I KNOW don't smell like that, for example a perfume may smell of a terrible chemical harsh smell instead)

    in other words, we're screwed :p
     
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  3. M Paine

    M Paine Senior Member

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    Hi @Prefect, the answer is probably that no one knows for sure.

    There is evidence for their being a factor in the bloodstream which is signalling cells to put the breaks on the tricarboxylic acid cycle (and other metabolic pathways) in ME/CFS. That is at least true of some cell types, I wouldn't know if neurons in the CNS would fit into that category.

    That doesn't exclude the possibility that you have something else going on, as in your other thread where you describe your case, it's clearly something different to what most here have experienced.

    My thoughts would be that if you do have the similar cognitive issues found in CFS, then there is probably some inflammation occurring in the CNS. It's not known exactly how that inflammation might effect mitochondrial energy production, but my guess would be that it could.

    Who knows, perhaps you do have typical ME/CFS and you are immune to PEM, in which case you would make a great test subject. Hopefully better testing methods (biomarkers) become available and will help answer your question. There are already some tests available which might offer some clues, like the Brain imaging technology used to look at Microglial Activation (Jarred Younger at Stanford, or Hugh Perry at University of South Hampton).

    Out of interest, have you tried low dose naltrexone?
     
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  4. Wolfiness

    Wolfiness Activity Level 0

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    So when people talk about mitochondrial oxidation in bipolar disorder etc., are they only talking about brain mitochondria?

    www.psychiatrictimes.com/bipolar-disorder/mitochondrial-dysfunction-common-bipolar-disorder
    I tend to get a bit hypomanic during remissions. Jay Goldstein mentioned some patients with a hypomania/mania + remission correlation too.
     
    Last edited: May 15, 2017
  5. Jesse2233

    Jesse2233 Senior Member

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    there's also microglial inflammation as a cause of brain dysfunction per Dr Younger's research
     
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  6. Wishful

    Wishful

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    The simple answer seems to be 'yes'. Cerebral mitochondria have some genetic differences from mitochondria elsewhere in the body, so it seems reasonable for there to be problems that affect one without affecting the other.

    For myself, I feel that my body's mitochondria are working okay. My legs are okay with a 50 km bike ride, but my brain wants to flop down on a nice soft pillow and do nothing. I will probably have PEM the day after such a ride, but maybe less than after using my arms for a few minutes doing something that strains them beyond normal usage. For that matter, maybe the PEM from a long bike ride comes from holding on to the handlebars rather than from leg use.

    I think my mental lethargy is more from excess kynurenines rather than mitochondrial dysfunction.
     
  7. Valentijn

    Valentijn Activity Level: 3

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    Yes. In fact the mitochondrial disease clinician I saw yesterday briefly mentioned this in passing. Though diagnosis would be problematic, since brain biopsies are a bad idea :woot:

    Mitochondrial DNA is not inherited like other DNA. A fetus can get a mixture of good and bad mitochondria from the mother, which can mean that some types of tissues in the fetus have bad mitochondria, while other tissues have only good mitochondria. This is why the same heteroplasmic mutation can cause completely different symptoms in different people, even in the same family.
     
  8. Hip

    Hip Senior Member

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    If you look at Prof Behan's ANT autoantibody theory of the cause of mitochondrial dysfunction in ME/CFS (which is only speculation, and there is at present very little evidence to support the theory), it suggests that a local infection in a particular organ like the brain could cause only local mitochondrial dysfunction, just in that organ.

    It is known that the ANT autoantibody, which appears to be induced by coxsackievirus B infection, causes mitochondrial dysfunction in coxsackievirus B heart muscle infection (myocarditis). But the interesting thing in coxsackievirus B myocarditis is that this autoantibody-driven mitochondrial dysfunction is restricted to the heart muscle; other organs of the body do not seem to be affected by the ANT autoantibody.

    So I wonder if the same thing could happen in the brain: perhaps a local coxsackievirus B infection in the brain might trigger ANT autoantibodies which only affect the brain, but not the rest of the body.

    So one might speculate that ME/CFS patients with more mental exertion rather than physical exertion PEM may have more issues with their brain, such as a chronic low level brain infection.



    I am a bit like you, @Prefect, in that I suffer PEM after mental exertion, but I get very little PEM from physical exertion (although when my ME/CFS was more severe a few years back, I was also more limited physically).

    Now, my medical history involved an episode of meningitis / encephalitis (likely from coxsackievirus B4) that caused some brain damage; so as a result, possibly I may have more coxsackievirus B lurking about in my brain that other ME/CFS patients who did not have such a brain infection episode.
     
    Last edited: May 16, 2017
  9. Prefect

    Prefect Senior Member

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    Okay folks, I know there are many theories none of which have been proven.

    So all we can do is mess with meds and supplements and see what sticks.

    I'm willing to try everything till I find it.

    My point is, the next thing I want to try is supplements that power up mitochondria. What I'm confused about is which supplement to use; for instance many of them have L-Carnitine, which would be useless for me because it doesn't cross BBB, so I would need ALCAR.

    So my question really is what mito supplement can I use that just targets the brain. I mean I could make a stack myself, but if there's a product out there that just targets the brain and has all the required compounds in synegistic ratios that you know about I'd appreciate the information.

    Interesting. My initial infection 20 yrs ago when I was vacationing in Istanbul was a "jaundicelss" hepatitis with severely elevated liver enzymes, but even if Coxakievirus may have caused it, the only treatment at the time would have been supportive (there's no treatment) till it resolves (which the liver did on its own, with so supportive treatment at that). 20 years later though, not sure the original infection agent is relevant anymore.
     
  10. Alvin2

    Alvin2 Senior Member

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    I doubt this is your issue, if you have ME/CFS it may be the early stages, you may have white matter lesions as i do, you may have some other type of brain damage or tumor, you could have a genetic condition, a stroke, a concussion or many other things are possible.
     
  11. antherder

    antherder a.k.a. Princess Dauer, Nematode Nation

    Not sure if this is relevant, but I came across this study after reading a recent thread about the temperature inside our mitochondria.

    My brain isn't up to reading/evaluating it, but just posting in case others are interested;

    Title: The brain is hypothermic in patients with mitochondrial diseases

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4013774/
     
  12. ljimbo423

    ljimbo423 Senior Member

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    I don't know of any mito supps that specifically target the brain. However there are many that work throughout the whole body. You probably already know about some of these. NADH, D-Ribose, b-1, coq10, and pantethine are some. NADH is very important to mitochondrial function and helps to create ATP in the mitochondria.

    Vitamin B-1 is a co-factor for the pyruvate dehydrogenase complex, which helps feed the the krebs cycle in the mitochondria. D-Ribose helps to make ATP, the body's main energy source that is produced in the mitochondria. Pantethine helps to create coenzyme A, which also feeds the krebs cycle in the mitochondria.

    There is a lot of really good info at this link for most supplements! Good Luck!
     
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  13. Prefect

    Prefect Senior Member

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    Ok I see Pyrroloquinoline quinone a lot around this site for this purpose. I might try that in a month or so once i'm done with current month long experiment with methylfolate/methyB12.
     
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  14. Wishful

    Wishful

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    Prefect, you should double-check your assumption that ALCAR doesn't pass the BBB. I did a quick check and found that it quite definitely does pass. There's a lot of health-quackery online, so if you read something on a body-building site or other type of 'read this and buy our amazing products' site, confirm it by checking peer-reviewed scientific papers.
     
  15. Prefect

    Prefect Senior Member

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    Ok here's a question for all you folks.

    Did you begin breathing differently the day you got sick? Almost chronically hyper inflating your lungs and taking shallow breaths, like very subtle hyperventilation?
     
  16. Wishful

    Wishful

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    My disorder started with Type IV food sensitivity, so I'm not sure what day it became CFS. However, I did notice fairly soon that I was sighing unusually frequently. I still have periods when excess sighing occurs. It definitely seems to be related to CFS or at least neuroinflammation, rather than just depression.
     

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