Post-Lyme Arthritis: More than Lyme?
Persistent joint symptoms may represent a new-onset autoimmune disease
By: Nancy Walsh Sept 25, 2016
Sept 30, 2016
Arthritis & Rheumatology
John Wiley & Sons Inc
350 Main Street
Malden MA 02148, USA
Attn: Richard J. Bucala, MD, PhD, Editor Arthritis and Rheumatology
Dear Dr. Bucala,
For the record, there has been no response from the corresponding author of the article published in your journal:
Autoimmune Arthritides, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Psoriatic Arthritis, or Peripheral Spondyloarthropathy, Following Lyme Disease
In light of recent discoveries regarding the antibiotic resistance/tolerance of Borrelia, the peer reviewers of this manuscript should have been asking the question I presented;
“What methods were deployed by your team to rule out persistent Borrelia infection? (Molecular diagnostics, culture, Dieterle staining with the DNA probes, etc.)”
Seronegative Borrelia infection is well documented so referencing antibody test results to validate a ”theory” that persistent infection is not responsible for deteriorating/debilitating arthritis is quite misleading.
Faulty/misleading antibody tests landed a sixteen year old male in a psychiatric ward when his lab results did not meet the CDC’s strict criteria for positive results. His Western blot had only four of the required five IgG bands. Subsequent DNA sequencing identified a spirochetemia in this patient’s blood so his psychiatric issues were a result of neurologic Lyme disease misdiagnosed by antiquated/misleading serology. Here is the study:
1. DNA sequencing diagnosis of off-season spirochetemia with low bacterial density in Borrelia burgdorferi and Borrelia miyamotoi infections.
2. Early Lyme disease with spirochetemia -diagnosed by DNA sequencing
“The 2-tier serology assay missed 85.7% of the cases of early Lyme disease with spirochetemia. The latter diagnosis was confirmed by DNA sequencing”
In addition, Borrelia miyamotoi found here in the Northeast cannot be detected using current serology. Fifty percent of the patients identified by the Mayo Clinic with newly discovered Borrelia mayonii did not test positive using the current two-tier serologic tests for Lyme disease. Of course none of these limitations are mentioned in the manuscript by Dr. Sheila L. Arvikar.
Until such time that we have reliable and routine laboratory tests identifying the causative agents of Lyme disease (in all stages of disease) any study based on antibody results is disingenuous, at best.
Conflict of interest:
I would like to point out that the authors of this manuscript are Rheumatologists who would benefit financially from a diagnosis requiring “lifelong immunosuppressive therapy.”
The refusal of the corresponding author to respond to my serious inquiry is quite disturbing.
Cc: E W St Clair, Duke University Medical Center; President, American College of Rheumatology, 2014-2015
To: “Sherrill Franklin” <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Cc: “MMI” <email@example.com
Sent: Tuesday, September 27, 2016 11:18:44 AM
Subject: Re: [MMI] News story: Post-Lyme Arthritis: More than Lyme?
Letter to the corresponding author and Editor of Arthritis and Rhuematology.
Post-Lyme Arthritis: More than Lyme?
—Persistent joint symptoms may represent a new-onset autoimmune disease
By: Nancy Walsh Sept 25, 2016
Sept 27, 2016
Massachusetts General Hospital
Center for Immunology and Inflammatory Diseases
CNY 149-8 149 13th Street,
Charlestown, MA 02129.
Attn: Sheila L. Arvikar, MD
Dear Dr Arvikar,
In reference to your recent manuscript published in “Arthritis and Rhuematology,” I would like to point out that the scientific community freely describes persistent B. burgdorferi infection in a wide variety of animals (not just reservoir animals) as we have studies proving persistent infection in mice, dogs, ponies, monkeys and cows but for some strange reason there is no persistent/chronic infection in humans. This is a fabricated conviction by the handful of academic researchers who control the narrative as we learned recently of Professor Kim Lewis and Dr. Ying Zhang’s work   identifying the presence of persister cells in the bacterium that causes Lyme disease which are drug-tolerant, dormant variants of regular cells.
Quote from Dr. Ying Zhang, professor at the Department of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health:
“Standard antibiotic treatment for Lyme disease does not kill persistent Borrelia bacteria. (May 2016)”
Rudenko and colleagues reported culture confirmation of chronic Lyme disease in 24 patients in North Carolina, Florida, and Georgia.  All had undergone previous antibiotic treatment.
As you know Dr. Arvikar, thirty-year-old serology cannot be used to gauge treatment failure or success as seronegative Borrelia infection has been reported in the literature for decades.   What methods were deployed by your team to rule out persistent Borrelia infection? (Molecular diagnostics, culture, Dieterle staining with the DNA probes, etc)
A response to this inquiry is requested.
Cc: Richard J. Bucala, MD, PhD, Editor Arthritis and Rhuematology
 Researchers investigate four promising new treatments for Lyme disease
-Antibiotic cocktails using existing drugs; strategies to discover new drugs that selectively target the Lyme bacterium.
 A Drug Combination Screen Identifies Drugs Active against Amoxicillin-Induced Round Bodies of In Vitro Borrelia burgdorferi Persisters from an FDA Drug Library
-Johns Hopkins researchers recently identified Borrelia as an antibiotic resistant/tolerant superbug capable of developing round body forms after antibiotic exposure.
 Culture evidence of Lyme disease in antibiotic treated patients living in the Southeast.
-Culture confirmation of chronic Lyme disease in 24 patients in North Carolina, Florida, and Georgia
 Isolation and polymerase chain reaction typing of Borrelia afzelii from a skin lesion in a seronegative patient with generalized ulcerating bullous lichen sclerosus et atrophicus. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/p
-Serology for B. burgdorferi sensu lato was repeatedly negative.
-Despite treatment with four courses of ceftriaxone with or without methylprednisone for up to 20 days, progression of sclerosus et atrophicus (LSA) was only stopped for a maximum of 1 year.
 Granulomatous hepatitis associated with chronic Borrelia burgdorferi infection: a case report
-The patient had active, systemic Borrelia burgdorferi infection and consequent Lyme hepatitis, despite antibiotic therapy.
To: “MMI” <firstname.lastname@example.org
Sent: Monday, September 26, 2016 7:31:40 AM
Subject: [MMI] News story: Post-Lyme Arthritis: More than Lyme?
Looks like the powers-that-be may be busy trying to redefine and reinterpret persistent Lyme out of existence ahead of the new guidelines:
West Grove, PA 19390
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