new Aussie research on zinc, iron overload and Alzheimers


Senior Member
Sth Australia
A new specialist i have had told me to get my rainwater tank water tested due to it could be too high in zinc... i had been wondering what zinc had to do with things till I heard the latest research. Maybe he's worried my memory and brain issues are being caused by the following?

the following also make our main news tonight over here in Australia
Iron overload could be behind the development of Alzheimer's disease, according to a new research.

The study by researchers in Australia also reveals the role of beta-amyloid precursor protein (APP), which forms plaques in affected brains.

To each the conclusion, Jack Rogers at the University of Melbourne and colleagues, used mouse studies, healthy human brain cells and post-mortems to show that APP's role is probably to flush toxic iron from neurons.

However, in Alzheimer's, the APP's function is sabotaged by zinc, which accumulates in the disease's trademark plaques, reports New Scientist.

Normally, zinc aids neuronal signalling, but as it becomes trapped in plaques, it both disrupts APP's iron-clearing role and denies neurons the zinc they need for signalling.

The outcome is a double-whammy, which sees iron continuing to accumulate and neurons losing their ability to signal appropriately.

Read more: Iron overload may speed up Alzheimer's - The Times of India


XMRV - L'Agent du Jour
I wonder where this leaves people with a diagnosis of the genetic condition Haemochromatosis (iron overload!)

Interestingly, Haemochromatosis can also be misdiagnosed as ME/CFS/Fybro, but the treatment can be as 'simple' as taking 500mls of blood from the patient initially weekly then fortnightly, monthly, and then at regular intervals until sky high ferritin levels come down to a 'healthy' level.

Some people don't get symptoms for decades, and then can die early from organ damage (due to iron overload) and the 'lucky' ones get all kinds of symptoms including chronic fatigue (!), joint pains and mishapen joints in hands, 'suntan skin' (from the iron), feeling v ill, headaches, skin itching and potentially diabetes, liver cancer etc, which leads to a visit to GP and eventually diagnosis.

Iron builds up in the body over decades, but women have advantage of having monthly menstrual cycle (which off loads much of the iron each month) - so their symptoms often start after menopause. Men's can start in 40's.

Average GP of course will run standard blood tests, find nothing and attempt to treat with counselling and anti depressants - (until the patient gets lucky and the actual cause is found, sometimes years later, with a simple blood test) - sound familiar?


Senior Member
I wonder if anyone of the CFS population can give some feedback if Alzheimer is also a risk-factor for us ? It wouldn't surprise me that this pathway is disturbed too, because we have anemia, what makes our body uses (more) zinc to transfer molecules. In a normal functioning system, iron is responsible for that.

Maybe Rich can comment on that ?