Prophylaxis of the Autoimmune Diseases

Duncan D. Adams, John G. Knight, Alan Ebringer
2013 Journal of US-China Medical Science  
Pasteur's correct Germ Theory of Disease led to discovery of the Immunity System that exists for defense against diseases caused by bacteria or virus infections. In order to cope with the huge diversity of microbial infections, the immunity system needs a flexibility of immune response. This is provided by use of semi-random somatic gene mutations in lymphocytes, the cells that recognize invading bacteria and viruses. Burnet realized that this flexibility leads to development of the Forbidden
more » ... ones that cause the autoimmune diseases by accidentally being reactive with a host antigen instead of a microbial one. Ebringer has recently discovered the microbial triggers of rheumatoid arthritis and ankylosing spondylitis and has determined the amino acid sequences of the antigens on them that trigger the related autoimmune diseases. This has explained how histocompatibility antigens can predispose to autoimmune diseases. The Salk and Sabin anterior poliomyelitis vaccines have prevented the polio epidemic leg paralyses. We postulate that these paralyses were rare autoimmune complications of virtually universal poliovirus infection. As autoimmune diseases are triggered by microbial infections, we suggest that the triggering bacteria or viruses be sought, so that prophylaxis of the autoimmune diseases can be achieved by vaccination against their triggering microbes.
doi:10.17265/1548-6648/2013.01.004 fatcat:7zibsuhpkrcgjc7xigwsrfqcce