$4 million in prizes for literature reviews that explain Alzheiemer’s

In Latest Scientific News by Kristin Loomis

The Oskar Fischer prize is named after a neuropathologist who was the first to describe neuritic plaques in 1907 in Prague. James Truchard, the former CEO and Chairman of National Instruments has donated funds for a prize to scientists who can review the existing medical literature to come up with a theory on what causes Alzheimer’s. Truchard points out that there have been 130,000 scientific papers on Alzheimer’s but that each paper focuses only on a narrow aspect of the disease and brain science. He wants someone to comb through all of the literature and find a unifying “big picture” explanation. “Just like someone like Einstein did in creating the theory of general relativity or Darwin did in looking at …

Research Priorities

In Latest Scientific News by Kristin Loomis

Note: we welcome your input. Please send comments to: Kristin_Loomis@HHV-6Foundation.org PROPOSED NEW PRIORITIES FOR ALZHEIMER’S RESEARCH Exploration of HHV-6A and HHV-7 in the development and progression of Alzheimer’s Disease Background: Two recent papers published in Neuron have strongly implicated herpesviruses in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer’s disease. Moir and Tanzi showed that amyloid plaques develop rapidly in response to infection by HHV-6A, HHV-6B and HSV1 (Eimer 2018). In addition, a comprehensive NIH funded “multiomic” evaluation of the Alzheimer’s brain tissue using next generation sequencing data strongly implicated two roseoloviruses: HHV-6A and HHV-7 (Readhead 2018). Among the findings: Contrary to popular belief, HHV-6A is not ubiquitous. Only HHV-6B, which is spread via the saliva, is ubiquitous. HHV-6A is not found in the …

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New findings on how HHV-6A/B U94 blocks angiogenesis

In All, Latest Scientific News by Kristin Loomis

The HHV-6 latency gene U94 has been found to block angiogenesis, but the mechanisms behind this phenomenon have been unclear. A team lead by Roberta Rizzo and Elisabetta Caselli in Italy shed light on this process, opening the door to new potential molecular targets to pursue in treating diseases marked by improper vascularization.


In Latest Scientific News by Kristin Loomis

The NEJM rarely covers HHV-6, but did an excellent case history of this patient with HHV-6 reactivation in conjunction with DRESS. The patient was not treated with an antiviral in spite of a plasma HHV-6 DNA load of 112,836, extensive lymphadenopathy, rash and abnormal liver function tests. What did NEJM get wrong? They stated ciHHV6 could be ruled out because a) the viral load was only log 5 on a plasma DNA test and b) the viral load dropped to less than 500 copies/ml. The plasma viral load in a ciHHV-6 patient can fall below 500 copies/ml if the blood is centrifuged within a few hours. On the other hand, ciHHV-6 samples shipped overnight and centrifuged the next day, are …

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HHV-6 small non-coding RNA proposed as an indicator of an early stage of HHV-6 reactivation

In All, Alzheimer's Disease, Latest Scientific News by Kristin Loomis

German investigators have identified a marker for what they believe is the earliest stage of viral reactivation, or “transactivation” marked by transcription of several viral small non-coding RNAs in the absence of detectable viral replication. The group believes that these viral small RNAs could be developed as biomarkers.