Science is closing in on Crohn’s Disease, a debilitating inflammatory bowel disease, which causes severe abdominal pain, diarrhea, weight loss, and fatigue. Part of the equation is the fugus recently found in the gut. The other part, found this week, were two bacteria that played a major role in how the person developed the disease.
My mother suffers from a form of Chrohn’s Disease, called Ileitis,, formerly Regional Ileitis. This affects primarily the small and large intestines, but which can occur anywhere in the digestive system between the mouth and the anus. In her case, it affected the stomach. Certain things in her diet cause blockage in the small intestines that cause pain, diarrhea, and nausea.
The list of hazzard foods get longer every year. Things like broccoli, cabbage, stuffing, apple, grape skins, orange juice pulp, etc.
“Essentially, patients with Crohn’s have abnormal immune responses to these bacteria, which inhabit the intestines of all people. While most researchers focus their investigations on these bacteria, few have examined the role of fungi, which are also present in everyone’s intestines. Our study adds significant new information to understanding why some people develop Crohn’s disease. Equally important, it can result in a new generation of treatments, including medications and probiotics, which hold the potential for making qualitative and quantitative differences in the lives of people suffering from Crohn’s.”
In the past, studies found that E coli bacteria had been a major factor in Crohn’s sufferers. Now there were two more, Serratia marcescens and the fungus Candida tropicalis, are contributors to this disease too. The main factors that cause this disease are genetic along the lines of environment and one’s diet. As long as the probiotic did not have yogurt,the active cultures irritated her Crohn’s Disease, she wouldn’t get sick.
My mother lost so much weight during one of her attack that she fit into clothes she wore before marrying my father. She couldn’t wear her wedding ring because it wouldn’t stay on her finger.
The researchers found strong fungal-bacterial interactions in those with Crohn’s disease: two bacteria (Escherichia coli and Serratia marcescens) and one fungus (Candida tropicalis) moved in lock step. The presence of all three in the sick family members was significantly higher compared to their healthy relatives, suggesting that the bacteria and fungus interact in the intestines. Additionally, test-tube research by the Ghannoum-led team found that the three work together (with the E. coli cells fusing to the fungal cells and S. marcescens forming a bridge connecting the microbes) to produce a biofuel — a thin, slimy layer of microorganisms found in the body that adheres to, among other sites, a portion of the intestines — which can prompt inflammation that results in the symptoms of Crohn’s disease.
This is good because it is the first time a fungus and bacteria are linked to Crohn’s Disease. Of course, with the studies, the stomachs of the relatives in the Crohn’s Disease family are different from the ones that are disease free family. A good indication that there is trouble in the gut is when the doctor recommends a soy formula other than regular formula for their baby. A writer friend had a son with Crohn’s and she told me that.
Thankfully, this condition is not hereditary. Mom had a blood transfusion at 18. It made me feel better that treatment is improving for Crohn’s sufferers. Maybe someday, there will be a cure.
Credit: © vaakim / Fotolia Fungus in humans identified for first time as key factor in Crohn’s disease
Crohn’s disease affects primarily the small and large intestines, but which can occur anywhere in the digestive system between the mouth and the anus.
Sarah DiGiulio Sleep Reporter, The Huffington Post 09/26/2016 08:09 am