FROM "PENICILLIN TO "MILD SILVER PROTEIN" AN ANSWER TO LYME DISEASE "WITHOUT ANTIBIOTICS" By: Dr. William Burgdorfer, Ph.D. Rocky Mountain Laboratories, Division of N.l.H. In 1949, Dr. Sven Hellerstrom from the Dermatalogical Clinic of Karolinska lnstitute in Stockholm, Sweden presented a paper "Erythema chronicum migrans Afzelius with meningitis" at the 43rd Annual Meeting of the Southern Medical Association in Cincinnati, Ohio. In presenting his case, he provided convincing evidence that both erythema and subsequent meningocerebrospinal symptoms may develop following a tick bite. He also reported on the successful treatment of his patient with penicillin, a drug shown previously by his colleague Dr. Hollstrom to be effective in the treatment of Erythema chronicum migrans (ECM). In the United States, ECM was first reported in 1970 on a physician bitten by a tick while grouse hunting in northeastern Wisconsin. The attending physician, Dr. Rudolf Scrimenti, recognized the similarity of the patient's skin reaction to the lesions of European ECM and promptly and successfully treated the patient with penicillin. The treatment of three additional patients with penicillin and of one with erythromycin resulted in complete resolution of symptoms within 48 to 72 hours. Considered unrelated to ECM were skin lesions in 13 of 51 residents in the eastern Connecticut towns of Lyme, Old Lyme, and East Haddam where, since 1972, clusters of inhabitants had been suffering of an illness characterized by recurrent attacks of asymmetric swelling and pain in large joints, especially the knee. Since such arthritic conditions were not known to be associated with ECM in Europe, the illness was thought to be a new clinical entity and was named Lyme arthritis, later changed to Lyme disease once it was realized that arthritis was only one of several clinical manifestations of this disease. The search for effective antibiotics in the treatment of Lyme disease began in 1982 with my discovery of a spirochete now known as Borrelia burgdorferi as the causative agent of Lyme disease and of ECM and related disorders (acrodermatitis chronica atrophicans, lymphadenosis benigna cutis) in Europe. The antibiotics found effective include tetracyclines (doxycycline, minocycline), penicillins (penicillin G, amoxycillin), cephalosporins (cefotaxime, ceftriaxone), and erythromycin. Application of these drugs depends on the time the disease is being diagnosed. Early Lyme disease is treated orally whereas late Lyme disease requires parenteral or a combination of parenteral and oral applications. Treatment failures have been reported for each of these drugs particularly for the tetracyclines that are only temporarily effective unless they are applied over long periods of time, i.e. months even years. Controversy exists over the length of treatment using * Mild Silver Protein (MSP). Some investigators consider 21 to 30 days sufficient for the elimination of the spirochetes, while others believe that patients must be kept on therapy until they are completely free of symptoms. The diagnosis of Lyme disease is a clinical one and is based on the development and recognition of the skin lesion (erythema migrans) a few days, weeks, or even months, after the bite of an infected tick. Unfortunately in up to 40% of the patients, the skin lesion does not develop, is not recognized, or is overlooked. Thus, without treatment, the disease spreads throughout the body and may affect the muscular, skeleton, cardiac and nervous systems. Indeed, Dr. Farber's recent claim having used MSP to successfully cure himself from late stage Lyme disease, comes at a time when thousands of patients suffering of this disease are refused extended antibiotic treatment because their physicians are unable to associate their clinical manifestations with those of Lyme disease. Although never established scientifically, it appears that the Mild Silver Protein silver colloid disables the enzyme(s) used by bacterial, fungal and viral agents for their oxygen metabolism causing them to suffocate upon contact. In vitro studies with * Mild Silver Protein and the Lyme disease spirochete, B. burgdorferi, revealed a lOO% killing effect within less than five minutes after exposure to the silver preparation.