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Causes of Scleroderma: Infection

Overview
Infection (General)
Bacterial Infections
Borrelia Burgdorferi
HIV/AIDS
Nanobacteria

Persistent Infection Study
Viral Infection

Overview

Researchers have long suspected an infection component may be involved as the trigger of some cases of scleroderma and there is an ongoing study about persistent infection as a possible cause of scleroderma.

Infection and Rheumatic Diseases (General)

Autoimmune/auto-inflammatory syndrome induced by adjuvants (ASIA) after quadrivalent human papillomavirus vaccination in Colombians: a call for personalised medicine. Our results highlight the risk of developing ASIA after HPV vaccination and may serve to increase the awareness of such a complication. PubMed, Clin Exp Rheumatol. 2015 Jul-Aug;33(4):545-8.

Bacterial Infections

Reversible IgA deficiency after severe Gram-negative bacteria infection in a patient with systemic sclerosis. Although the mechanism of secondary IgAD is still vague, its association with autoimmune diseases including SSc and also with bacterial infection is discussed. (Springerlink) Masato Yagita. Modern Rheumatology. (Also see Antibodies)

Borrelia Burgdorferi Infection

Case Report: Borrelia-associated early-onset morphea: A particular type of scleroderma in childhood and adolescence with high titer antinuclear antibodies? Results of a cohort analysis and presentation of three cases. We observed a statistically highly significant association between morphea, serologic evidence of Borrelia infection, and high-titer antinuclear antibodies when disease onset was in childhood or adolescence. J. C. Prinz. Journal of the American Academcy of Dermatology. (Also see Morphea)

Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) and AIDS

Case Report: HIV infection associated with scleroderma: report of two new cases. In this report, we describe the rare association of linear scleroderma of the four limbs in two HIV patients also affected with virus C hepatitis. J A Mosquera, J Clin Pathol.

Nanobacteria (NB) or "Nanoparticles"

This is a very new field of research which is highly controversial.

A few researchers suspect that nanobacteria may be a cause of scleroderma or some of its symptoms, such as calcinosis.

A lot of the controversy surrounding nanobacteria has to do with its very name, in that some researchers do not believe that it represents a life form and thus cannot properly be named "bacteria", because the research on its purported nucleic acid has not been completed yet. Thus, some believe that "nanoparticles" would be a better description for it.

This is a very new field of research which is highly controversial, however it has recently attracted the attention of researchers at the Mayo Clinic and NASA. Nanobacteria have been found in kidney stones, Alzheimer's disease, heart disease, prostatitis, and some cancers.

Persistent Infection in Systemic Sclerosis

Lack of evidence for bacterial infections in skin in patients with systemic sclerosis. While some caveats apply, the data presented here do not support the contention that persistent bacterial infections play an important role in the pathogenesis of systemic sclerosis (SSc). Am J Med Sci.

Viral Infection

Increased immunoreactivity against human cytomegalovirus UL83 in systemic sclerosis. Immunoreactivity to UL83 HCMV is frequent and strong in patients with SSc, implying a possible pathogenic role for this disease. PubMed, Clin Exp Rheumatol, 02/27/2017.

Viruses 'more likely to lead to infection' in the morning, says report. Viruses are 10 times more likely to cause illness in their victims if the infection is contracted in the morning, and late nights increase the impact even further, according to a study by the University of Cambridge. The Independent, 08/18/2016.

The prevalence of infectious agents in patients with systemic sclerosis (SSc). SSc is associated with a higher rate of certain infections, which deserves further investigation in order to assess the role of infections in disease etiology/pathogenesis. PubMed, Turk J Med Sci. 2015;45(6):1192-7.

Acute and regressive scleroderma concomitant to an acute cytomegalovirus (CMV) primary infection. Our observation suggests a potential triggering role of CMV primary infection in the development of scleroderma. Journal of Clinical Virology, 10/20/2014.

Screening of human papillomavirus (HPV) infection in women with systemic sclerosis (SSc). This study is the first to evaluate HPV status in women with systemic sclerosis (SSc) and researchers found that HR HPV52 was the most common genotype with a greater multi-HPV infection rate. PubMed, Clin Exp Rheumatol, 2014 Aug 15.

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