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Mycoplasma, AIDS, Gulf War

Thomas Keske TKeske at mediaone.net
Wed Jan 5 17:58:50 EST 2000


Mycoplasmas have been implicated not only in Gulf War
Syndrome (a finding promoted by Dr. Garth Nicolson), but has
also been suggested as a possible co-factor in the production
of AIDS.

The Gulf War connection, if correct, is significant because it
suggests involvement of biological warfare.   This also might
suggest something about U.S. biowar research, because the
U.S. had supplied materials to Iraq before the Gulf War,
when Iraq was still considered "friendly".

In trying to investigate whether any vaccine contaminations involving
Africans or gay men could have been intentional, I try to determine
the state of scientific  knowledge about such possible cofactors,
prior to the outbreak of the AIDS epidemic, around 1980.

A search in PUBMED for the keyword "mycoplasma"  produced more than
12,000 entries.   I have not yet had time to investigate all of this
in detail. However, even a quick look produced some interesting
findings concerning what was known, and what scientists were studying,
related to mycoplasma, in the years prior to the AIDS outbreak:

   * many hundreds of experiments done, pre-1980,
     dating back at least to early 1960s.

   * known as disease agent, including in humans

   * had identified many different strains, had multiple
     methods of identifying mycoplasmas in 1970s.   This tends to
     refute a claim that I had read on a veteran's newsgroup, that
     there currently existed no means to identify mycoplasma.

   * shows up in study of "Virus-associated immunopathology"
     (i.e., not merely studying immune system's reaction, but
     studying damage caused to the immune system)

   * studies involving vaccines given to cattle

   * reference to "SV40-induced T-antigen in mouse cells".
     (SV40 is a monkey virus that caused a scandal in the 1960s,
     by contaminating vaccines).

   * studying in German prostitutes

   * studying role in sexually transmitted diseases

   * studying "unnatural" hosts: meaning experimental infection
     of animals that normally would never be exposed.

   * studying cross-species infections: e.g., isolates from
     monkeys, injected into mice

   * studying *infectious* infertility.   I am not reading a great
     amount into this particular item, in itself.   However, I cannot
     help being reminded of South Africa, where U.S. sanctioned biowar
     research turned out to be trying to find covert ways of
     sterilizing blacks).

It is clear enough that mycoplasma was yet another area where
there was extensive experimentation, some of it seemingly
irresponsible, unnatural, and at risk for creating new types
of infections.

Tom Keske
Boston, Mass.



Entries below are a sampling from 12000+ matches, and
reflect all of the points listed above.


J Gynecol Obstet Biol Reprod (Paris) 1978 Apr;7(3 Pt 2):558-68

[Present aspects of sexually transmitted diseases].

[Article in French]

Siboulet A

The emotional repercussion of STD remains very important. New present
clinical aspects and new possibilities of diagnosis are pointed out.
Concerning syphilis, the incubation period may be very long, cutaneo-
mucous lesions of the secondary period very atypical . Concerning
gonorrhea, the incubation period may be long (20 days); female or
male asymptomatic forms are frequent: the existence of non-genital
localizations is to be known. As to non-gonococcal infections, the
frequence of Chlamydiae Tr.  etiology is emphasized. Therefore an
absolute priority must be given to the laboratory results which make
the prescription of epidemiological treatment possible.

PMID: 581291, UI: 79028047

J Clin Microbiol 1978 Apr;7(4):399-400

Development of a template for use in immunofluorescent identification
of mycoplasmas.

Panangala VS, Lein DH

A template for securing blocks of agar onto glass slides is described.
Use of the template allows efficient handling as well as thorough
washing of agar blocks during the immunofluorescence staining process.

PMID: 357446, UI: 79005782

Immunology 1978 Apr;34(4):715-20

Activation of B lymphocytes by mycoplasma mitogen(s).

Naot Y, Ginsburg H

Various strains of the murine mycoplasma M. neurolyticum have been
shown to induce extensive blast transformation of mouse lymphocytes,
comparable in strength to mitogenicity exerted by these mycoplasma
species on rat lymphocytes. The data summarized in this report
demonstrate that this mitogenic effect is non-specific. Lymphoid
cells from mycoplasma free, germ-free mice were activated to the same
extent as those lymphocytes obtained from conventionally bred animals.
Lymph node cell suspensions obtained from athymic nude mice were
strongly activated by M. neurolyticum mitogen. Furthermore, mouse
thymocytes and mouse T-cell enriched populations, were not stimulated
by these mitogens. It was thus suggested that M. neurolyticum
activates mouse B lymphocytes.

PMID: 309850, UI: 79066601


Can J Comp Med 1978 Apr;42(2):156-67

Response of the respiratory tract of calves kept at controlled
climatic conditions to bovine Herpesvirus 1 in aerosol.

Jericho KW, Darcel CQ

Seven experiments with four calves each were conducted in which the
calves spent at least four days of adaptation in an environmental
chamber and then were subjected to climatic stress in the form of a
number of constant ambient temperature and humidity combinations. On
the second day of climatic stress the calves were individually exposed
to measured numbers of infectious units of bovine herpesvirus 1 (BHV1,
virus of infectious bovine rhinotrachetis) in aerosol. The calves
were killed seven or eight days later.  Mycoplasma were found in some
nasal swabs and in one lung. Certain bacteria but no Pasteurella were
often isolated from the lungs. Bovine herpesvirus 1 was isolated from
chamber air and from most postinoculation nasal swabs, tracheas and
lungs. The number of macro- and microscopic lesions did not appear to
be influenced by the climatic conditions of the experiments. The
histopathological changes in epithelium at all levels of the
respiratory tract were described in detail.

PMID: 208734, UI: 78212509

Fertil Steril 1978 Apr;29(4):462-3

An animal model for the study of infectious human infertility.

Swenson CE, O'Leary WM

PMID: 148374, UI: 78169281
Infect Immun 1978 Apr;20(1):248-57

Experimental infection of the genital tract of female grivet monkeys
by Mycoplasma hominis.

Moller BR, Freundt EA, Black FT, Frederiksen P

Mycoplasma hominis, a common inhabitant of the mucosae of the
genitourinary tract of human and nonhuman primates, was inoculated
directly into the uterine tubes of five laparotomized grivet monkeys.
A self-limiting acute salpingitis and parametritis developed within a
few days in all animals. Although there were no clinical signs of
overt disease, the gross pathology was characterized by pronounced
oedematous swelling and hyperaemia of the tubes and parametria.
Microscopically, cellular infiltrations of lymphocytes and some
polymorphonuclear leukocytes were found in the acute phase in the
subserosa and muscularis of the tubes and in the parametria.
Granulation tissue and fat necrosis appeared at a later stage in the
parametria. The infection was associated with a marked antibody
response and a moderate rise of the erythrocyte sedimentation rate
and leukocyte counts. The capability of M. hominis to produce
salpingitis and parametritis in a nonhuman primate would seem to add
rather significantly to the available evidence suggesting an
etiological role of this organism in inflammatory diseases of the
internal female genitals of humans.

PMID: 97224, UI: 78217269


Am J Vet Res 1978 Mar;39(3):417-23

Systemic and local immune responses associated with bovine mammary
infections due to Mycoplasma bovis: resistance and susceptibility in
previously infected cows.

Bennett RH, Jasper DE

PMID: 637389, UI: 78142859
Ther Ggw 1978 Mar;117(3):439-49

[Studies on mycoplasma infection of 171 prostitutes in the city of

[Article in German]

Weissenbacher ER, Weissmann J, Ehemann W

PMID: 635823, UI: 78139257
Isr J Med Sci 1978 Mar;14(3):347-52

Isolation of mycoplasmas from the genital tract of women with
reproductive failure, sterility or vaginitis.

Bercovici B, Haas H, Sacks T, Laufer A

The presence of mycoplasma was investigated in 77 women with
infertility, 34 women complaining of sterility, 92 women with
vaginitis and 66 healthy control subjects. The group of infertile
women was subdivided into those with one or two spontaneous abortions,
those with three or more abortions and those with missed abortions.
The isolation rate of mycoplasma from the vagina and cervix of the
infertile women ranged from 18 to 36%. The endometrial isolation rate
was 21% in women with missed abortions but lower in women of the
other two subdivisions. Mycoplasmas were infrequently found in
patients investigated for sterility. They were isolated at a higher
rate in patients with vaginitis, especially in those with trichomonas-
associated vaginitis. They were not found in healthy control subjects.
In the endometria positive for mycoplasma no specific histological
features for this infection were found.

PMID: 565342, UI: 78150318

Am J Vet Res 1978 Mar;39(3):519-22

Comparison of three methods of differentiating bovine mycoplasma.

Thomas CL Jr, Hidalgo RJ

Growth inhibition (GI) by specific antisera, direct fluorescent
antibody technique (FAT), and fatty-acid profile analysis by gas-
liquid chromatography (GLC) were compared as methods for identifying
13 strains of bovine mycoplasma. By the FAT, there were 8 bilateral
and 13 unilateral cross reactions. In the GI study, there were 4
bilateral and 7 unilateral cross reactions. In both FAT and GI
studies, there were fluorescence and inhibition, respectively, with
13 homologous antisera. Analysis by GLC revealed the 13 mycoplasmas
could be placed into 4 distinct chromatographic groupings. The GLC
profiles of 2 organisms were sufficiently unique that they could be
used for specific identification.

PMID: 345894, UI: 78142880
Zh Mikrobiol Epidemiol Immunobiol 1978 Mar;(3):16-20

[Lung tissue alterations following experimental infection of mice
with acholeplasmae isolated from simians with hematosarcoma].

[Article in Russian]

Marantidi AN, Kharin GM, Dzhikidze EK

This paper is devoted to the study of pathogenic acholeplasmae
potencies. Two strains of acholeplasmae isolated from the blood and
organs of Papio hamadryas suffering from hemoblastosis and a standard
Ach. laidlawii A. strain were subjected to the comparative study with
the use of a "pulmonary model" in experiments on mice.  Morphological
investigations showed affections of the pulmonary tissue
characterized by stage-by-stage inflammatory-destructive changes
analogous to the lesions found in "mycoplasmosis of the lungs".
Prolonged inflammatory changes in the pulmonary tissue were
maintained by a long-term persistence of acholeplasmae in it. A
conclusion was drawn that acholeplasmae isolated from monkeys
suffering from hematosarcoma had marked pathogenic action on the
pulmonary tissue of mice. Strain differences in the pathogenic
activity of the strains under study were revealed.

PMID: 665035, UI: 78207203
J Clin Microbiol 1978 Feb;7(2):127-32

Bromothymol blue broth: improved medium for detection of Ureaplasma
urealyticum (T-strain mycoplasma).

Robertson JA

Bromothymol blue (B) broth for the cultivation, detection, and
identification of Ureaplasma urealyticum is described. In this medium,
strains Cook and 960 had shorter generation times (60 min or less)
and reached higher populations (over 10(8)) than have yet been
reported for this species. Furthermore, the indicator changes color
before the end of logarithmic growth, and the cultures retain
viability for at least 1 day thereafter, greatly simplifying the
handling of the organism. When the populations in cultures of these
two strains and seven new isolates were determined, growth was
detected earlier and proceeded to higher final titers in B broth than
in urease test color medium (U-9 broth). The inclusion of antibiotics
in B broth for use in clinical laboratories (B/NL broth) made the
medium selective, specific, and more sensitive for the isolation of U.
urealyticum. Comparison of B/NL broth with genital mycoplasma (GM)
agar and U-9 broth for the primary isolation of U. urealyticum was
made with 183 urethral swabs.  All 70 isolates were detected on B/NL
broth, but only 66 and 63 isolates were detected on GM agar and in U-
9 broth, respectively. Moreover, the cultures in B/NL broth were pure
and at titers that generally showed good correlation with colony
counts on GM agar.

PMID: 632344, UI: 78130263

Med J Zambia 1978 Feb-Mar;12(1):16-8

Normal values in the adult Zambian. (VIII). Antiviral and mycoplasma

Kibukamusoke JW, Tsirkin RS

PMID: 121185, UI: 80216251
Vet Rec 1978 Jan 21;102(3):62-3

Mycoplasmas from vagina of a bitch with open cervix pyometra.

Adegboye DS, Addo PB

PMID: 636226, UI: 78139991
Clin Chim Acta 1978 Jan 2;82(1-2):119-24

The effect of Mycoplasma contamination on the in vitro assay of
pyruvate dehydrogenase activity in cultured fibroblasts.

Clark AF, Farrell DF, Burke W, Scott CR

Cultured fibroblasts contaminated with mycoplasma were shown to have
increased in levels of apparent pyruvate dehydrogenase and pyruvate
dehydrogenase complex enzyme activity. The apparent pyruvate
dehydrogenase specific activity was about 1000-fold greater in
cultured Mycoplasma pneumoniae than in cultured fibroblasts. Several
acid hydrolytic enzyme activities were also shown to be present in M.
pneumoniae though a lower apparent specific activity than in cultured

PMID: 412621, UI: 78063088
Dev Biol Stand 1978;41:361-5

The T1 vaccine used in the control of contagious bovine
pleuropneumonia in Nigeria.

Onoviran O, Adegboye DS, Makinde AA, Chima JC

A lyophilised T1 vaccine was produced by direct lyophilisation of a
72-hour broth culture to which 10% sterile sucrose solution was added.
Each vial contained 2 ml to make a total of 10 doses when
reconstituted. Each ml of the product contained an average of 109
colony forming units of the organism. When injected at the tip of the
tail or subcutaneously behind the shoulder of 2,000 zebu and 1,0000
Ndama cattle, no outward reactions were observed. 12 zebu cattle were
vaccinated and challenged 6 months later by direct contact with
artificially infected cattle for 4 months. All the animals were
completely protected against the disease.

PMID: 753664, UI: 79237256
Masiga WN.

A cultural and  serological study of cattle vaccinated twice with
Mycoplasma mycoides  subspecies mycoides.  Br Vet J. 1976 Mar-Apr;132
(2):187-91. No  abstract available.  PMID: 786443; UI: 77001103.
Res Vet Sci 1976 Mar;20(2):167-73

Experimentally produced calf pneumonia.

Gourlay RN, Howard CJ, Thomas LH, Stott EJ

Experimental pneumonia was produced in calves by the endobronchial
inoculation of pneumonic lung homogenates. Irradiated homogenates
produced minimal pneumonia.  Ampicillin treatment of the homogenates
and the experimental calves reduced the extent of pneumonia.
Treatment with tylosin tartrate prevented experimental pneumonia.
These results suggest that the total pneumonia was due to organisms
susceptible to tylosin tartrate and that the residual pneumonia
remaining after ampicillin treatment was due to organisms susceptible
to tylosin tartrate but not to ampicillin. Of the organisms isolated
from the lungs, the ones in this latter category most likely to be
responsible are Mycoplasma dispar and ureaplasmas (T-mycoplasmas).

PMID: 1265354, UI: 76177496
FEBS Lett 1974 Jul 15;43(2):219-22

The SV40-induced T-antigen in mouse cells.

Fischer H

PMID: 4369376, UI: 74309504
Infect Immun 1973 Sep;8(3):349-54

Cell-mediated immune response in cattle to Mycoplasma mycoides var.

Roberts DH, Windsor RS, Masiga WN, Kariavu CG

PMID: 4581007, UI: 73250314
Bull World Health Organ 1972;47(2):265-74

Virus-associated immunopathology: animal models and implications for
human disease. 2. Cell-mediated
immunity, autoimmune diseases, genetics, and implications for
clinical research.

Allison AC, Beveridge WI, Cockburn WC, East J, Goodman HC, Koprowksi
H, Lambert PH, Lochem JJ van, Miescher PA, Mimms CA, Notkins AL,
Torrigiani G

PMID: 4539416, UI: 73068726

Proc R Soc Med 1971 Jan;64(1):36

Experimental mycoplasma infections in unnatural laboratory animal

Smith GR

PMID: 5551447, UI: 71156891
Aust Vet J 1970 Mar;46(3):109-10

The isolation of mycoplasmas from cats with respiratory disease.

Spradbrow PB, Marley J, Portas B, Burgess G

PMID: 5425270, UI: 70225115
Pharmazie 1969 Apr;24(4):189-92

[Problems of the state examination of viral vaccines in Mycoplasma

[Article in German]

Hlinak P, Friedemann J, Starke G

Publication Types:


PMID: 4896924, UI: 69280699

Yale J Biol Med 1968 Apr-Jun;40(5):444-8

Mycoplasmas as pathogens.

Thomas L

PMID: 5673853, UI: 68400421
Yale J Biol Med 1968 Apr-Jun;40(5):436-43

An experimental model for human mycoplasma disease.

Clyde WA Jr

PMID: 5673852, UI: 68400420
Cancer 1967 May;20(5):760-77

Electron microscopic studies of human leukemia and lymphoma.

Dmochowski L, Yumoto T, Grey CE, Hales RL, Langford PL, Taylor HG,
Freireich EJ, Shullenberger CC, Shively JA, Howe CD

PMID: 5337395, UI: 67138201

J Immunol 1967 May;98(5):1028-38

Nature of the immune response to Mycoplasma pneumoniae.

Fernald GW, Clyde WA Jr, Denny FW

PMID: 4164844, UI: 67160320

Paulick C.

[Possibilities of use and evaluation of laboratory investigation in
diseases of the upper respiratory tract of the chicken].  Dtsch
Tierarztl Wochenschr. 1963 Feb 15;70(4):94-7. German. No abstract

PMID: 4305790; UI: 69180133.



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