Diagnosis

Alzheimer's disease epidemic

Diagnosing Neurodegenerative Disease

Brain disease is surging around the world. Alzheimer’s disease alone is taking the lives of 50-100 million people around the world now. Millions will die of the disease this year, while many millions more will be diagnosed and misdiagnosed, while millions more will go undiagnosed. The epidemic is more severe in some countries than others. Supposedly, no one knows the scope of the problem. The evidence swept under the rug and the global misinformation campaign suggest otherwise.

Until recently, few have considered the possibility that Alzheimer’s disease is a transmissible disease. As it turns out, all evidence suggests that it is a prion disease (infectious proteins). In fact, there is no evidence to the contrary. This denial and misinformation has been fueling a public health crisis around the world for years. It’s gaining momentum.

A variety of factors can trigger neurodegenerative disease, including genetics, head trauma and neurotoxins.

Despite millions of deaths annually, experts suggest that the prevalence of Alzheimer’s disease will quadruple by 2050, if not sooner. Unfortunately, there is a growing stack of evidence that Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease and other brain diseases are transmissible. Deadly, self-replicating proteins appear to be one of the common threads. Similar proteins are now associated with the childhood cases of Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease. Rogue proteins also appear to be related to the global autism epidemic.

Alzheimer’s disease alone is taking the lives of 50-100 million people around the world now. Millions will die of the disease this year, while many millions more will be diagnosed, misdiagnosed and undiagnosed. The epidemic is more severe in some countries than others. Supposedly, no one knows the scope of the problem. The evidence swept under the rug and the global misinformation campaign suggest otherwise.

Until recently, few have considered the possibility that Alzheimer’s disease is a transmissible disease. As it turns out, all evidence suggests that it is a prion disease (infectious proteins). In fact, there is no evidence to the contrary. This denial and misinformation has been fueling a public health crisis around the world for years. It’s gaining momentum.

A variety of factors can trigger neurodegenerative disease, including genetics, head trauma and neurotoxins.

Despite millions of deaths annually, experts suggest that the prevalence of Alzheimer’s disease will quadruple by 2050, if not sooner. Unfortunately, there is a growing stack of evidence that Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease and other brain diseases are transmissible. Deadly, self-replicating proteins appear to be one of the common threads. Similar proteins are now associated with the childhood cases of Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease. Abnormal proteins also appear to be related to the global autism epidemic.

The epidemic is worse in some regions of the world than others. Finland and Iceland were at the top of the list just a few years ago. Now, countries in the Middle East and Persian Gulf states have soared to the top of the list.

In the United States, for example, deaths from Alzheimer’s disease increased 71 percent from 2000 to 2013. During that time, deaths from heart disease decreased 14 percent.

The Alzheimer’s/Parkinson’s epidemic is more widespread than anyone knows. Physicians have withheld millions of diagnoses from patients and their families. According to the Alzheimer’s Association, physicians in the U.S. only inform 45 percent of patients about their Alzheimer’s disease diagnosis. Similar suppression is likely at work in most countries to help shade the epidemic. Meanwhile, millions more go undiagnosed and misdiagnosed.

A groundbreaking study suggested that Alzheimer’s disease causes six times as many deaths as the official statistics indicate. In reality, the study said Alzheimer’s disease was the underlying cause in more than 500,000 deaths in 2010 that were often attributed to conditions, such as pneumonia, caused by complications of Alzheimer’s. Those numbers make Alzheimer’s disease the third-leading cause of death in the United States, behind heart disease and cancer. Researchers at the Rush University Medical Center in Chicago led the study and published their results in 2013 in the medical journal Neurology. Governments and industry are working diligently to keep prion disease off the public radar. The epidemic will persist. A cure does not exist. Ignoring the truth is making it worse.

Prions (PREE-ons) are a deadly and unstoppable form of protein that migrates, mutates, multiplies and kills with unparalleled efficiency. Prions cause fatal neurodegenerative disease in humans and other mammals by converting the cellular version of prion protein into a toxic form that erodes the brain and body. Prion disease often is described as a wasting disease that causes a loss of body mass and brain mass.

Dr. Stanley Prusiner, an American neuroscientist from the University of California at San Francisco, earned a Nobel Prize in 1997 for discovering and characterizing prions and prion disease. President Obama awarded Prusiner the National Medal of Science in 2010 to recognize the importance of his research. Important reforms to policies to protect public health, however, have been elusive.

prion disease and Alzheimer's disease

Prion disease also is known as transmissible spongiform encephalopathy (TSE). The operative word is “transmissible.” Prusiner claims that all forms of TSE are caused by infectious prions.

“Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is the most common neurodegenerative disease in humans and will pose a considerable challenge to healthcare systems in the coming years,” Prusiner said.

Prusiner’s most recent study confirms that Alzheimer’s disease is a prion disease, which means that millions of people with Alzheimer’s disease (and millions who died ahead of them) are highly infectious. Alzheimer’s disease is currently defined based on the presence of toxic protein aggregations in the brain known as amyloid plaques and tau tangles, accompanied by cognitive decline and dementia.

“I believe this shows beyond a shadow of a doubt that amyloid beta and tau are both prions, and that Alzheimer’s disease is a double-prion disorder in which these two rogue proteins together destroy the brain,” said Stanley Prusiner, MD, the study’s senior author and director of the UCSF Institute for Neurodegenerative Diseases, part of the UCSF Weill Institute for Neurosciences. “The fact that prion levels also appear linked to patient longevity should change how we think about the way forward for developing treatments for the disease. We need a sea change in Alzheimer’s disease research, and that is what this paper does. This paper might catalyze a major change in AD research.”

A previous study published in the journal Nature adds to the evidence about the transmissibility of Alzheimer’s disease between people. A second study by the same scientist in early 2016 supports the claim.

Unfortunately, the implications are profound. Prion pathways threaten each and every person on the planet. The greatest prion pathway in the world is human sewage. It’s contaminating food and water supplies with deadly prions now. It’s been going on for years, but it’s worse than ever now.

TSE is a spectrum disease that varies in severity and symptoms. The diagnosis depends on which region of the brain is impacted first and by what prion mutation. Few cases of prion disease are identical in terms of symptoms and pathology.

According to neuroscientists Dr. Laura Manuelidis, at least 25 percent of Alzheimer’s diagnoses are actually Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD), which is further up the prion spectrum. CJD, without dispute, is extremely infectious to caregivers and loved ones, but it has not been declared a reportable disease across the U.S. and many other nations.

When the presenting symptom is memory loss, the diagnoses flow along the following chart.

Alzheimer's a prion disease

In humans, the prion spectrum includes Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease and CJD–the most aggressive version. The difference between these diseases is very slight and often indistinguishable to neurologists. Millions of people have CJD, which is clearly an aggressive prion disease. CJD has not been declared a reportable disease across most nations.

Prions are such a formidable threat that the U.S. government enacted the Bioterrorism Preparedness and Response Act of 2002, which included a provision to halt research on prions in all but two laboratories.

The U.S. government initially classified prions as select agents that pose an extreme risk to food, water and health systems.Today, governments don’t regulate prions at all.

As such, millions of caregivers are being misinformed, misguided and exposed to an aggressive prion disease. So are friends and family. Unfortunately, Prusiner’s science is being ignored and we all are facing a public health disaster because of the negligence and reckless disregard for public health.

“The holy grail is to identify patients in the pre-clinical stage so that effective early interventions, including new medications, can be studied and used,” said Dr. Bahado-Singh, chairman of the Beaumont Department of Health. “Alzheimer’s is probably the disease of the current mid-century and later on, the impact will be very profound because of the aging of the population globally,’’ Bahado-Singh said. “The costs will be astronomical. It’s estimated it will exceed the budget of many countries. We’re talking about a global pandemic.’’

Prion disease is highly contagious, incurable and fatal. Despite all of the smoke and mirrors, prion disease is prion disease. It’s killing more and more mammals, including humans, every year. The hype about species barriers is ridiculous, reckless and irresponsible.

In humans, most diagnoses are a process of elimination. After eliminating all other possibilities, the medical guesswork begins:

  • If the patient has a memory disorder, it’s diagnosed as Alzheimer’s disease;
  • If they have a movement disorder, it’s diagnosed as Parkinson’s disease;
  • If the patient shows both symptoms, doctors flip a coin;
  • If the patient ever had a concussion, it’s now ruled as CTE;
  • If the person is incapacitated, it’s Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD) and very transmissible;
  • If the victim is in the deer family, it’s chronic wasting disease instead of prion disease; and
  • If the victim is a beef or dairy cow, it’s called mad cow disease instead of prion disease.

In other mammals, it’s called different things, but prion disease has been found in camels, dolphins, elephants, mink, cats and many other species. The suggestion of a reliable species barrier against thousands, if not millions, of mutations is ludicrous.

treat Alzheimer's disease

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Gary Chandler is a prion expert. He is the CEO of Crossbow Communications, author of several books and producer of documentaries about health and environmental issues around the world. Chandler is connecting the dots to the global surge in neurodegenerative disease, including Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, chronic wasting disease and other forms of prion disease. The scientific name for prion disease is transmissible spongiform encephalopathy.