- On June 5, 2009, the Daily Mail (UK) reported the details
of the miraculous 'cure' of Russell McPhee, a 49 year old Australian
man who had a devastating stroke and was paralyzed for more than two decades.
After multiple injections of Botox into his spastic muscles, he was able
to walk again.
- Before its well-known use on wrinkles, Botox was used
for stroke victims to counteract the muscles spasms. However, it is most
unusual to get such a positive response after so many years, as in McPhee's
case. Interestingly, Botox is Botulinum toxin, a neurotoxic protein
produced by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum. It is the most toxic
protein known. The intense forced relaxation of his contracted muscles
(along with physical therapy) was the key to initiating his 'cure.'
- Professor John Olver, one of Australia's top stroke experts,
said: "We use Botulinum toxin routinely for patients with spasticity
which has been caused by stroke, brain damage or heart disease. But we
use it very early on, usually within weeks of a stroke, to prevent the
spasticity from becoming a problem. Sometimes the spasticity is so severe
we inject those muscles with Botulinum toxin, which relaxes the muscles
enough to allow a physiotherapist to strengthen and stretch them. It is
unfortunate that this patient had to wait for 20 years and extremely unusual
that his treatment was so successful after being immobile for so long.
But he's very fortunate that his muscles are strong enough to allow him
to be able to walk."
- During my many years of research investigating the
role of bacteria as possible agents in certain chronic diseases and in
cancer, I was curious whether similar bacteria might play a role in
heart disease and stroke, or in chronic muscle disease.
- There are a few reasons to suspect bacteria in these
conditions. First, there is increasing evidence that bacteria (and viruses)
may play a heretofore unrecognized role in chronic illness. Second,
there is evidence that the blood of both healthy and ill people contain
bacteria. And thirdly, there is an intimate connection between stroke,
heart disease, and chronic hypertension (high blood pressure).
- Bacteria and chronic muscle disease
- By Googling "bacteria + muscle disease",
one can easily review the evidence for bacteria (particularly pleomorphic
cell wall deficient bacteria and mycoplasma) in certain chronic diseases
in which muscular weakness, arthritic symptoms and fibrotic changes
take place over time. These diseases include rheumatoid arthritis, Lyme
disease, chronic fatigue syndrome, and others. Some patients with chronic
diseases appear to be helped by long term antibiotic therapy.
- Years ago, my autopsy research into the "acid-fast
bacteria" discovered in systemic scleroderma convinced me that these
microbes were implicated in the muscle, cardiac, and kidney abnormalities
that accompany the hardening and thickening of the skin in fatal cases.
(Figure 1 shows round tiny granular coccoid-appearing bacteria in the
deep portion of the skin in scleroderma.) For more details, Google: "alan
cantwell" + scleroderma.
- Figure 1: Tiny round granular coccoid-appearing bacteria
in the skin of scleroderma.
- Bacteria and the blood
- Recent research, based on molecular biology, indicates
that 90% of the cells of the human body are microbial cells! Despite this
amazing new discovery, most physicians do not believe bacteria are involved
in any way with the major diseases (heart disease, stroke and cancer) that
kill most of us. In addition, most physicians still believe that healthy
blood is sterile, that is, free of bacteria.
- During the 1970s the late Guido Tedeschi and his colleagues
at the University of Camerino in Italy showed than human blood was universally
infected staphylococcus-like and streptococcal-like bacteria. In 1977
Domingue and Schlegel confirmed "the existence of a novel bacteriologic
system" in the blood. They cultured staphylococcal-like bacteria
and filamentous cocco-bacillary forms from 71% of the blood specimens
from ill patients; and from 7% of supposedly healthy people. These pleomorphic
(variation in size and shape) bacteria grew out of round complex "dense
bodies" and developed into "ordinary bacteria." The authors
concluded: "These organisms may represent an adaptation of certain
bacteria to life in the blood." Their full report, which contains
pictures (full-screen) of the bacteria grown from human blood, is online
- In the 1990's microbiologists Phyllis E Pease and Janice
Tallak termed these blood bacteria as "the human bacterial endoparasite."
Finnish researchers Kajander et al. describe them as "novel bacteria-like
particles," which are staphylococcal-like. Like viruses, these tiny
bacterial forms were able to pass through bacterial filters, and were exceedingly
difficult to culture. The Finnish team called them "nanobacteria"
and proposed a tentative name for the novel agent: Nanobacterium sanquineum.
- In 2002 McLaughlin et al. presented a study entitled
"Are there naturally occurring pleomorphic bacteria in the blood
of healthy humans?" The researchers were surprised to discover bacteria
in the blood "since it is generally acknowledged that the blood stream
in healthy humans is a sterile environment, except when there is a breach
in the integrity of the tissue membranes." More details on blood
bacteria can be found in my article "All human blood is infected
with bacteria," posted on the Internet.
- In addition, these blood bacteria studies confirm the
findings of Gunther Enderlein (1872-1968), Wilhelm Reich (1897-1957),
Raymond Royal Rife (1888-1971), Virginia Livingston (1906-1990), Gaston
- (1924- ) and others whose research can be easily googled.
- Bacteria and hypertension
- Because cryptic bacterial infection of the blood
is not accepted by most scientists, there have been no studies correlating
infection with hypertension. However, a very recent report (May 16, 2009)
suggests that high blood pressure could be caused by a common virus, known
as the cytomegalovirus (CMV), a common viral infection affecting between
60 and 99 percent of adults worldwide.
This new study brought together a team of researchers from a variety of
disciplines infectious diseases, cardiology, allergy and pathology
to look more closely at the issue. Previous controversial studies
linked CMV infection to hardening of the arteries (atherosclerosis). Hardening
of the arteries leads to hypertension, heart and kidney disease, and
- Bacteria and the Heart
- In an autopsy study entitled "Mycobacterial forms
in myocardial vascular disease," published in 1965, my mentors Virginia
(Wuerthele-Caspe) Livingston and Eleanor Alexander-Jackson first showed
acid-fast bacteria in the heart muscle, in the coronary blood vessels
and in the aorta. Later, they proposed a vaccine to combat the bacteria
they observed not only in heart disease, but also in cancer and degenerative
disease as well. A summary of their research can be read by Googling:
U.S. Patent # 4692412, which also describes their finding of bacteria
in heart disease. Figure 2 shows bacteria in the heart muscle at autopsy
in a fatal case of AIDS. Figure 3 shows bacteria in the heart muscle
from an autopsied case of lymphoma cancer (mycosis fungoides).
- Figure 2: Bacteria in the heart muscle at autopsy in
a fatal case of AIDS.
- Figure 3: Bacteria in the heart muscle at autopsy in
a fatal case of mycosis fungoides (T-cell lymphoma).
- In various publications, Livingston and Alexander-Jackson
proposed that these microbes were closely related to the acid-fast mycobacteria
that cause human tuberculosis. In addition, they discovered that the
acid-fast stain was the best staining method to detect these ubiquitous
microbes in tissue sections and in laboratory culture. The various (pleomorphic)
forms of the microbe can appear as virus-sized forms, as yeast-like forms,
and as staphylococcal-like forms. In my experience, they appear most frequently
in biopsy and surgical specimens as round coccus-like forms that are found
both within and outside of the cells. Only rarely do they appear as acid-fast
rod-forms, the typical appearance of the classic form of tuberculosis
- Most recently, in a BBC news report on May 25, 2009,
a scientific team, headed by Arne Schaefer at the University of Kiel,
found a common gene mutation in patients with periodontitis (gum disease)
and in heart attack patients. There were also similarities between the
bacteria found in the oral cavity and those in the coronary plaques.
One theory is that the bacteria involved in gum disease trigger a low grade
inflammatory response throughout the body, resulting in changes in the
arteries that can lead to strokes and heart attacks. Another possibility
is that the bacteria disturb the way blood vessels dilate directly, since
some bacteria can enter the bloodstream. (http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/8063512.stm).
- Bacteria and strokes
- Only recently has there been mild interest in investigating
the role of bacteria in strokes. A Google search using key words "bacteria"
+ "strokes" leads to numerous web articles, such as "Ulcer
bacteria linked to stroke', "Bacteria in mouth could predict strokes",
"Antibiotics help prevent strokes", etc.
- A stroke in the form of a hemorrhage pours blood
into the affected areas of the brain and damages the brain cells and nerve
connections. A stroke in the form of a clot does not allow blood to
get to the cells. Obviously much more research needs to be done in this
area. If bacteria are universally present in the blood, they might
play a role in stroke formation.
- Bacteria in kidney disease
- It is well-known that chronic high blood pressure
can lead to kidney disease. The role of bacteria (particularly pleomorphic
cell wall deficient bacteria) in renal and urinary disease has been extensively
studied and pioneered by microbiologist Gerald Domingue, author of Cell
Wall Deficient Bacteria (1982). The PubMed website posts his many publications
concerning cryptic bacterial infection of the blood, the kidney and
the urinary tract. There is also an extensive bio on Domingue on the Wikipedia.
- Tragically, there is little interest in studying the
role of pleomorphic, cell wall deficient bacteria in kidney disease. Figure
4 shows such bacteria detected in the kidney in a fatal case of systemic
scleroderma. Note the similarity of these round bacterial forms to the
bacterial forms depicted in the skin of scleroderma (Figure 1) and in the
heart muscles of patients who died of AIDS and cancer (Figures 2 and
- Figure 4: Bacteria in the kidney at autopsy in a fatal
case of systemic scleroderma.
- Perhaps the biggest reason why pleomorphic, cell wall
deficient acid-fast bacteria are ignored in human disease is that these
microbes are so ubiquitous. Everyone carries them, both in sickness and
in health. Physicians are also reluctant to accept that the same type
bacteria present in a healthy individual could cause a variety of chronic
diseases in sick people.
- However, almost all healthy people eventually die
of diseases, such as cancer, heart or kidney disease, or suffer a stroke.
Livingston was fond of saying "the microbe" was both the giver
and the taker of life. I think it is fair to say that we still know very
little about the bacteria we carry in our bodies, and the trouble they
can cause as we age.
- In an October 2009 landmark paper posted on rense.com,
entitled "Heart disease; Beyond the stent and the bypass," Lawrence
Broxmeyer has summarized a century of little-known research into the
role of bacteria, particularly acid-fast tuberculous bacteria, in the
development of heart disease. His important findings and conclusions
can be found at: http://www.rense.com/general87/stent.htm
- Regarding stroke victim Russell McPhee: Why did a bacterial-produced
Botox product start a healing? The paralytic product forced a "breaking
up" of the tight, constricted muscle. This, along with the message,
allows better blood flow to the muscle. Could bacteria be involved in
some chronic muscular disease states? I am reminded of an autopsy study
of a fatal case of AIDS in which I discovered tiny round bacterial forms
in the skeletal muscle (Figure 5). Fatal cases of AIDS are frequently
associated with muscle weakness and "wasting."
- Figure 5. Bacteria in the skeletal muscle at autopsy
in a fatal case of AIDS associated with muscle wasting.
- Despite the heretical aspects of this report, I trust
it will stimulate other adventurous researchers to search for similar
acid-fast bacteria in an attempt to elucidate their precise role in the
most common chronic illnesses of man.
- Cantwell AR, Kelso DW. Autopsy findings of nonacid-fast
bacteria in scleroderma. Dermatologica. 1980;160(2):90-9.
- Cantwell AR: Necroscopic findings of variably acid-fast
bacteria in a fatal case of acquired immunodeficiency syndrome and Kaposi's
sarcoma.. Growth. 1983 Summer;47(2):129-34.
- Cantwell AR Jr.Variably acid-fast pleomorphic bacteria
as a possible cause of mycosis fungoides. A report of a necropsied case
and two living patients. J Dermatol Surg Oncol. 1982 Mar;8(3):203-13.
- Domingue GJ, Schlegel JU.Novel bacterial structures in
human blood: cultural isolation. Infect Immun. 1977 Feb;15(2):621-7.
- Kajander EO, Tahvanainen E, Kuronen I and Ciftcioglu
- Comparison of staphylococci and novel bacteria-like
particles from blood. Zbl. Bakt. Suppl. 26, 1994.
- McLaughlin RW, Vali H, Lau PC, Palfree RG, De Ciccio
A, Sirois M, Ahmad D, Villemur R, Desrosiers M, Chan EC. Are there naturally
occurring pleomorphic bacteria in the blood of healthy humans? J Clin
Microbiol. 2002 Dec;40(12):4771-5.
- Pease PE, Tallack JE. A permanent endoparasite of man.
1. The silent zoogleal/symplasm/L-form phase. Microbios. 1990;64(260-261):173-80.
- Tedeschi GG, Di Iorio EE. Penetration and interaction
with haemoglobin of corynebacteria-like microorganisms into erythrocytes
in vitro. Experientia. 1979 Mar 15;35(3):330-2.
- Tedeschi GG, Bondi A, Paparelli M, Sprovieri G. Electron
microscopical evidence of the evolution of corynebacteria-like microorganisms
within human erythrocytes. Experientia. 1978 Apr 15;34(4):458-60.
- Tedeschi GG, Amici D, Sprovieri G, Vecchi A. Staphylococcus
epidermidis in the circulating blood of normal and thrombocytopenic
human subjects: immunological data. Experientia. 1976 Dec 15;32(12):1600-2.
- Tedeschi GG, Amici D. Mycoplasma-like microorganisms
probably related to L forms of bacteria in the blood of healthy persons.
Cultural, morphological and histochemical data. Ann Sclavo. 1972 Jul-Aug;14(4):430-42.
- Wuerthele-Caspe (Livingston) V, Alexander-Jackson E.
Mycobacterial forms in myocardial vascular disease. J Amer Med Wom Assoc.
- [This article was originally published in NEXUS NEW
TIMES, September 2009. Alan Cantwell M.D. is a retired dermatologist. He
is the author of The Cancer Microbe: The Hidden Killer in Cancer, AIDS,
and Other Immune Diseases, and Four Women Against Cancer: Bacteria, Cancer
and the Origin of Life, both published by Aries Rising Press, PO Box
29532, Los Angeles, CA 90029 (www.ariesrisingpress.com). His books are
available from Amazon.com and via Book Clearing House at 1-800-431-1579.
- Email address: firstname.lastname@example.org
- ADDENDUM: The following is a description of the bacteria
discovered within the heart and blood vessels by Virginia Livingston and
Eleanor Alexander-Jackson, and illustrated in their 1965 paper (cited
above). The description is included in their U.S. Patent #4692412 (issued
on Sept 8. 1987) , in which their "autogenous vaccine" invention
was proposed to stimulate the immune system against the build-up of these
pleomorphic acid-fast bacteria. My figures 2 and 3 in the above paper
showing bacteria in the heart muscle are strikingly similar to those
microphotographs showing "acid-fast organisms in heart muscle"
in their 1965 paper.
- (In) "Mycobacterial Forms in Myocardial Vascular
Disease", Virginia Wuerthele-Caspe Livingston and Eleanor Alexander-Jackson,
(1965) proposes the theory that there are microbic bodies in the lesions
of heart diseases and that they are especially numerous in the areas
where the blood vessels have ruptured. Until recently the theory has been
the coronary blood vessels of the heart are narrowed due to arteriosclerosis,
and that fatty deposit in the wall of the vessels, and overweight are
the determining factors in this type of heart disease. Now the medical
researchers are becoming aware of the fact that the blood vessels themselves
are often not involved so much as the supporting tissues and muscles
of the heart so that the heart vessels rupture due to extrinsic factors
outside the vessel rather than from intrinsic disease. This is particularly
true of patients with collagen diseases such as scleroderma and lupus
erythematosus. Vascular and myocardial pathology is related to chronic
low-grade infection by the mycobacterium-like organisms (Cryptocides).
- Degenerative changes occur in coronary heart disease
in the presence of the invasive mycobacterial parasite cryptocides.
- Postmorten heart sections of 6 patients with coronary
and aortic disease were stained by the Fite modification of the Ziehl-Neelsen
technique (for demonstrating Lepra bacilli in sections) using Kinyoun's
carbon-fuchsin, and compared with sections of the same involved areas
stained with conventional H and E. Eight predominant types of lesions were
observed in the myocardium
- 1. PERIVASCULAR CHANGES AROUND THE SMALL CORONARY VESSELS.
In the loose connective tissues numerous small acid-fast bodies can be
- 2. CELLULAR INFILTRATION. This is frequently seen not
only around the vessels but between the muscle fibers as well. These cells
consists almost entirely of mononuclear types, predominantly lymphocytes,
while large mononuclear phagocytes laden with organisms plasma and other
mononuclear cells are present in relatively large number.
- 3. FIBROBLASTIC INFILTRATION. The presence of these organisms
appears to stimulate the formation of fibroblasts. In some areas, the
muscle fibers and interstitial tissues appear to be replaced by fibroblasts.
- 4. INFARCTION. Where there has been an infarct, there
may be a softened central area with numerous small acid-fast cocci and
coccobacilli present in the collagenous hemorrhagic softened area.
- 5. NECROSIS. Necrotic changes may involve the blood
vessels. Striking degenerative changes of the vessel walls are observed
as illustrated not only by the sections of coronary vessels but also
by the sections of involved aorta. Proliferative changes may involve
the endothelium, with invasion of the endothelial cells, and are accompanied
by thickening and narrowing of the wall. Hairlike filaments of the organisms
were seen protruding into the lumen. These changes are also present in
the vasa vasorum of the aorta.
- 6. THROMBOSIS AND RECANALIZATION. Some areas of recanalization
were observed in heart, liver, and spleen.
- 7. CHANGES IN THE ELASTIC LAYER OF THE AORTA. The elastic
fibrils have lost their identity and have become collagenized with loss
of structure. As scar tissue forms, cholesterol-like plaques occur. It
seems possible that deposits may be derived in part from the fatty envelopes
of these organisms. In other tissue where masses of the organisms have
proliferated, polyhedral crystals resembling cholesterol have been observed.
- 8. CHANGES IN THE HEART MUSCLE. Individual nuclei of
the heart muscle are frequently parasitized, and replaced by small acid-fast
globoidal bodies. The muscle fibers themselves appear in a state of gradual
digestion and disintegration by both minute and larger acid-fast forms.
- All of the above can be treated and detected by this