Childhood leukemia linked to infections

I have lately been neglecting my blog and not answering e-mails and comments, for which I deeply apologize. I have been very busy in this period, but things should return to normal (?) within a few days.

 

As I was looking online for the BBC’s 2009 April Fools’ hoax this morning (no news as of yet), I read an interesting item that I thought I would pass along: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/7973678.stm It talks about a new study that has linked childhood leukemia to infections. Interesting read. And it gave me some food for thought.

 

As I think I have written here on previous occasions, I was diagnosed with MGUS only a few years after I was infected with EBV (=Epstein-Barr virus). I was quite ill for a month or so…I was in grad school in Canada at the time. Anyway, in recent years, after reading about other folks who came down with similar infections before being diagnosed with myeloma or MGUS, I have wondered if EBV could possibly have been one of the causes of my current state of smoldering myeloma. Of course, I am hardly a child…! Well, it’s just a thought. Who knows…

 

At any rate, let me wish you all a Happy April Fools’ Day! Here follow some well-known pranks that I found on Wikipedia, hehe:

  • The BBC television programme Panorama ran a famous hoax in 1957, showing the Swiss harvesting spaghetti from trees. They had claimed that the despised pest, the spaghetti weevil, had been eradicated. A large number of people contacted the BBC wanting to know how to cultivate their own spaghetti trees. It was, in fact, filmed in St Albans.
  • Left Handed Whoppers: In 1998, Burger King ran an ad in USA Today, saying that people could get a Whopper for left-handed people whose condiments were designed to drip out of the right side. Not only did customers order the new burgers, but some specifically requested the “old”, right-handed burger.
  • Taco Liberty Bell: In 1996, Taco Bell took out a full-page advertisement in The New York Times announcing that they had purchased the Liberty Bell to “reduce the country’s debt” and renamed it the “Taco Liberty Bell.” When asked about the sale, White House press secretary Mike McCurry replied tongue-in-cheek that the Lincoln Memorial had also been sold and would henceforth be known as the Lincoln Mercury Memorial.
  • San Serriffe: The Guardian printed a supplement in 1977 praising this fictional resort, its two main islands (Upper Caisse and Lower Caisse), its capital (Bodoni), and its leader (General Pica). Intrigued readers were later disappointed to learn that San Serriffe (sans serif) did not exist except as references to typeface terminology. (This comes from a Jorge Luis Borges story.)
  • Smell-o-vision: In 1965, the BBC purported to conduct a trial of a new technology allowing the transmission of odor over the airwaves to all viewers. Many viewers reportedly contacted the BBC to report the trial’s success. In 2007, the BBC website repeated an online version of the hoax.
  • Tower of Pisa: The Dutch television news reported once in the 1950s that the Tower of Pisa had fallen over. Many shocked people contacted the station.

5 Comments

  1. Margaret,

    I have recently discovered your amazing blog page after deciding to check out the status of curcumin and MM.

    To give some background info, I was diagnosed with MM in April 2005 (age 35) after my kidneys started to shut down. The MM was producing the nasty Kappa/Lamda free light chains which are toxic to the kidney. Anyway, went through conventional treatment (VAD, thalidomide/dexamethasone,etc) including stem cell transplant in Nov 2005. This put the MM in partial remission. Please note my kidneys never recovered and I was on hemodialysis 5 times/week until I recently received kidney transplant in Nov 2008. The kidney was donated by my loving and wonderful wife. 3 days after kidney transplant the kidney was attacked again by the kappa/lamda light chains (they just seem to wake up) but this managed by taking Velcade. So far so good, the kidney is performing well and my latest Kappa/Lamda ratio is 14.5 (above 1.95). However my Kappa is within range (8.36 mg/L) and lamda is only 0.56 mg/L which is very low. Although this produces a high ratio and hope it’s good news.

    Anyway, when I was diagnosed back in April 2005, I feverently researched possible treatments other than the nasty chemo. This lead me to the curcumin trials at MD Anderson, but there was nothing conclusive. Given that I’m at my 4th anniversary and now have a functioning kidney I decided to go back on the internet and see what’s out there and this is where I found your very helpful blog.

    So I’m about to embark on a 40 day trial of Curumin. I’m just waiting for the Doctor’s Best bottles coming. I appreciate there is a potential risk here with my transplanted kidney but I intend to get regular blood work done as well as kappa/lambda free light chains test.

    Before I go here I would like to get some feedback from you (if you can) on some recent test results on immunoglobulin levels. IgA = 21 mg/dl, IgG = 203 mg/dl, IgM < 5 mg/dl. I’ll admit I’ve been ignorant on understanding some of my results, but this is going to change.

    Tom

  2. Dear Margaret.

    I was diagnosed with IgA MGUS in January. I had no symptoms. I had just gone in to have my vitamin levels checked. The doctor did some other test and found the IgA MGUS. I immediately sought out help with building up my immune system and happened upon your blog.
    Interestingly, my grandson was diagnosed with autism about a year ago. He is three now. We have investigated all areas to improve his condition and one of the most important is the treatment of his immune system. Many children with autism have very compromised immune systems. He was given many vaccines. By the time he was one, he had received twenty-two vaccines.
    The most damaging vaccine he received was one called Proquad. It was a four-in-one vaccine containing MMR with a Varicella component added. In order for the Varicella component to work, they had to increase the amount to ten times the normal amount found in a single dose vaccine. Proquad came out in 2005 and was removed in 2008 from the US market. Needless to say, the vaccine was a deadly cocktail of viruses. My grandson became very sick after receiving this vaccine. His immune system was severely tasked.
    To make this long story short, I have had my thoughts about MGUS and Myeloma being related to a virus. I cannot think of anyone in my extended family that has cancer. And it is a big Irish family. Not one of my fathers’s or mother’s relatives, past or present had or has cancer.
    So, I was just dumbfounded by this diagnosis. I have done much research related to my grandson’s condition and was very aware of virus related diseases. So, it came to mind a study of a monkey cancer virus that was spread through the polio vaccine in the late 1950s and early 1960s in the US. It is called SV40. This is the report from the CDC.

    http://www.cdc.gov/vaccinesafety/concerns/archive/polio_and_cancer.htm.

    SV40 is turning up in a large number of cancerous tumors. There was no alarmed sounded about this virus until the 1990s when it started turning up in tumors biopsies.
    Now if you want to investigate deeper, M.D. Anderson did some studies.

    http://www2.mdanderson.org/depts/oncolog/articles/04/1-jan/1-04-2.html

    My daughter is in dental school and she has told me that they believe childhood diabetes is related to a viral event. I and many other believe that the large up-tick in children being diagnosed with this disease is also related to the vaccine load of live viruses and other toxins being given to children. My husband’s niece, at six was just diagnosed, two weeks after receiving her booster vaccines.

    I was seriously looking into this connection of viruses and cancer, when I just read your post and low and behold you were thinking the same thing. I wonder is there is a way to detect immune titers related to such a virus? If possible, then you could treat with antiviral drugs possibly.

    I read your blog regularly, and I have started C3 complex. My grandson is on a curcumin product called Enhansa by Lee Silsby Lab. Your blog is wonderful and I thank you for making all of your investigative efforts so readily available to us all.

    Nora

  3. Welcome back, Margaret. I, too, have thought about what possible links/causes might explain my myeloma since I don’t fit into the typical patient profile (although I understand with the increased incidence of MM, that profile may no longer be considered valid). Thanks for the April Fool’s laughs; I lack the huevos to commit most of the pranks, but have a profound appreciation for those who do!

    Good wishes & healing vibes to Tom. I hope he has good results with curcumin.

  4. Well speaking of viruses and MGUS, here is my story. Let me go back in time to college – 1976, where I had a bout with Mono and I believe my immune system has been compromised ever since. In Oct, 2007, I got sick – I thought it was just a virus but it just wouldn’t go away. I ended up with night sweats and low grade fever for about 4 weeks. Dr. origionally treated me for Lyme Disease. Only after 3 tests came back negative did he get off that line of treatment. Anyway, I was admitted to the hospital and had just about every test imaginable – NOTHING. Then readmitted and started on prednisone – some massive doses at first then tapered and it worked (very tough withdrawal I might add). Anyway, they never found out what the problem was and deferred to a “virus of undetermined origin” dx. After that, some routine blood work turned up some protein in my blood – had the BMB and dx with MGUS.
    I’m absolutely convinced that the MGUS either came from the virus or was kicked off by the virus. Dr doesn’t believe it but just coincidential for it not to be linked.

    God Bless

  5. Message for Nora,

    I think you are on the right lines. My son was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at the age of 2. He’d had chickenpox a few weeks earlier. The were 2 other toddlers in our area diagnosed with diabetes at the same time and one of them had previously had chickenpox and the other girl had slap face virus. Like you, I am also very suspicious about innoculating babies when their immune systems are still developing.

    Margaret’s most recent post on Salubrinal could be an interesting avenue to follow too. It appears that the compound helps cells to withstand stress caused by viruses. See:
    http://www.alzforum.org/new/detail.asp?id=1150

    Paul

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