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Cure to Treat African Sleeping Sickness Approved

Discussion in 'Other Health News and Research' started by Gemini, Nov 17, 2018.

  1. Gemini

    Gemini Senior Member

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    A new drug, fexinidazole, cures all stages of the disease [African Sleeping Sickness] within 10 days reports today's NYTimes:

    https://www.nytimes.com/2018/11/16/health/sleeping-sickness-africa-cure.html

    It is in pill form and was approved by Europe's drug regulatory agency.

    @FMMM1 and @alex3619 discuss on another thread Ron Davis' gene expression study that compared ME/CFS to other illnesses and concluded African Sleeping Sickness was the closest match (Community Symposium, 2018).

    The drug's chemistry/method of action looks interesting, perhaps someone can explain?

    www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29701144
     
  2. Sushi

    Sushi Moderation Resource Albuquerque

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  3. FMMM1

    FMMM1 Senior Member

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    Yea I've been thinking about this for a while i.e. why would ME/CFS has a similar gene expression to trypanosomiasis (African sleeping sickness)? The answer may lie in the reason for doing the gene expression study - it's a I haven't got a clue technique. You look at all known diseases, which have enough genetic data, and your study disease ME/CFS. This might help you to identify the disease mechanism.

    It turns out that the gene expression study may support Phair's theory that tryptophan may be causal in ME/CFS. I've only looked briefly on the web but if you search for something like "kynurenine tryptophan African sleeping sickness" you'll see all the same things that turn up in ME/CFS. In fact some of those who post here had picked upon African sleeping sickness since the symptoms are similar. E.g. @alex3619 became interested since reversal of the sleep/wake cycle occurs in African sleeping sickness and ME/CFS.

    Unfortunately one of the best researchers out there Mandy Hornig, who had focused in on the kynurenine pathway of tryptophan, may not currently be researching it - see @M Paine posts etc.

    Regarding the new drug; Ron Davis's nano needle may be a possible way to test whether it is effective in ME/CFS.



    Consider writing to your elected representative i.e. to request funding for ME/CFS research including the development of a diagnostic test.
    I've written to the European Union Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety (ENVI) requesting that they lobby for funding for research into ME/CFS including the development of a diagnostic test [https://forums.phoenixrising.me/ind...ch-theyre-working-for-you.61516/#post-1003111].
    Currently the ENVI Committee is lobbying for increased funding for research into Lyme disease and the development of a diagnostic test.
    In 2016 the European Commission [European Union civil service] said [regarding Lyme disease] that "Both basic research and the development of new diagnostics, treatments and vaccines for Lyme borreliosis are funded by EU research and innovation framework programmes. The total EU contribution to such projects since 2007 amounts to EUR 33.9 million [US dollars]" [http://www.europarl.europa.eu/doceo/document/E-8-2016-008631-ASW_EN.html].

    ME/CFS received no funding from the European Union [http://www.europarl.europa.eu/doceo/document/E-8-2017-006901-ASW_EN.html].
     
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  4. Moof

    Moof Senior Member

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    I just did that, and this sentence in one of the NCBI studies jumped out:

    "Melarsoprol, a trivalent arsenical, is the only drug that can be used to cure both forms of the infection once the central nervous system has become involved..."

    Some long-standing patients may remember that 20+ years ago, when it had become clear that a number of different species can suffer from ME (including dogs, cats, horses and raptors), vets developed a successful treatment using arsenic-based drugs. In fact, two vets who'd contracted ME after treating animals sick with it, also cured themselves this way. It's not really a viable human treatment, because of the high cancer risk in long-lived species, but it's interesting to hear an echo of it again so many years after reading those studies.
     
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  5. alex3619

    alex3619 Senior Member

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    Actually I got interested in African Sleeping Sickness many years ago. I've recently regained my interest due to the micro RNA findings (I think that is what they did). However I came at it from the perspective of someone who was salicylate intolerant and the impact this would have on the synthesis of prostaglandin D2, which is necessary for sleep. It triggers sleep, and the African trypanosome produces more of it, I think ... its been many years since I looked at this. I sometimes cannot sleep at all, and I suspect that in some cases this might be due to inhibition of PGD2 synthesis. If you start making too much though it might lead to hypersomnalence, or other sleep problems.
     
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  6. FMMM1

    FMMM1 Senior Member

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    Thank you very much; as always you have a very good understanding of this.

    Alain Moreau, at the recent OMF Symposium, presented data from a micro RNA study. Did this come up, or is there some other data?
     
  7. pattismith

    pattismith Senior Member

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    Fexinidazole or Melarsoprol are antiprotozoal drugs active against trypanosome infection.

    Unless your ME/CFS is triggered by a protozoan, these drugs will only harm you
     
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  8. Moof

    Moof Senior Member

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    @pattismith – yes, I do realise. It was just the coincidence that arsenic-based drugs have been used to cure both African sleeping sickness and ME that struck me, given the fact that there are some odd similarities between the two diseases and that another drug (suramin) has also been used in both.

    I only know of that one case where arsenic-based treatment has been used successfully in humans, but there were wider reports of successful treatment in animals with ME. The ethics were different with respect to animals, both because cancer risks may be significantly lower due to shorter lifespans, and because a severely-affected animal (especially a raptor) would likely have to be put down anyway if no treatment were given.
     
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  9. pattismith

    pattismith Senior Member

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    @Moof

    Vet's are in first line for zoonotic diseases, and they may have been infected with protozoan from their patients. Do you have a link to the story you are quoting?
     
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  10. Moof

    Moof Senior Member

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    Sadly not, it was donkey's years ago. You can find the reports of treatment of animals in the Co-Cure archives, which have all been preserved, but I can't remember where I read the story of the two vets who'd become infected and treated themselves with the same drug. Their self-experimentation wouldn't have passed any kind of ethical review, which is why no-one ever proposed trialling the drug in humans, but they said at the time that it had been completely effective.

    We won't know whether the ME-like illness that affects animals is the same as that in humans until a lot more unpicking has been done. Those old conversations about it really stuck with a friend and I, though, because we were part of a small ME outbreak affecting three people. We'd all had extensive contact with a cat, which had begun displaying many of the same symptoms quite a while before we did. Discussions about zoonotic connections in ME are hardly ever heard nowadays, but we still wonder about it!

    EDIT: Sorry, I meant to mention that the drug was called thiacetarsamide sodium.
     
  11. pattismith

    pattismith Senior Member

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    If I trust the few papers I read, Sleeping Sickness results from activation of the Kynurenine pathway.


    On the other hand, the metabolic trap that was hypothetized recently implies a blockade of IDO1 with tryptophan accumulation, and low kynurenin, which is just the opposite of the activation triggered by the trypanosome infection.


    Maybe someone can explain to me how to reconcile these views?
     
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  12. M Paine

    M Paine Senior Member

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    Just to clarify, I'm really unsure what the status of Mady Hornig and Columbia is currently. It was fairly public that she was/is suing Ian Lipkin and the department over sexual discrimination.
     
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  13. FMMM1

    FMMM1 Senior Member

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    Noted thanks.
     
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