Science

Nose Picking Could Increase Risk for Alzheimer’s and Dementia – Neuroscience News

Summary: The Chlamydia pneumoniae bacteria can travel directly from olfactory nerve in the nose and into the brain, forcing brain cells to deposit amyloid beta and inducing Alzheimer’s pathologies. Researchers say protecting the lining of the nose by not picking or plucking nasal hairs can help lower Alzheimer’s risks.

Source: Griffith University

Griffith University researchers have demonstrated that a bacteria can travel through the olfactory nerve in the nose and into the brain in mice, where it creates markers that are a tell-tale sign of Alzheimer’s disease.

The study, published in the journal Scientific Reports, showed that Chlamydia pneumoniae used the nerve extending between the nasal cavity and the brain as an invasion path to invade the central nervous system. The cells in the brain then responded by depositing amyloid beta protein which is a hallmark of Alzheimer’s disease.

Professor James St John, Head of the Clem Jones Center for Neurobiology and Stem Cell Research, is a co-author of the world first research.

“We’re the first to show that Chlamydia pneumoniae can go directly up the nose and into the brain where it can set off pathologies that look like Alzheimer’s disease,” Professor St John said. “We saw this happen in a mouse model, and the evidence is potentially scary for humans as well.”

The olfactory nerve in the nose is directly exposed to air and offers a short pathway to the brain, one which bypasses the blood-brain barrier. It’s a route that viruses and bacteria have sniffed out as an easy one into the brain.

The team at the Center is already planning the next phase of research and aim to prove the same pathway exists in humans.

This shows a man's nose“Picking your nose and plucking the hairs from your nose are not a good idea,” he said. Image is in the public domain

“We need to do this study in humans and confirm whether the same pathway operates in the same way. It’s research that has been proposed by many people, but not yet completed. What we do know is that these same bacteria are present in humans, but we haven’t worked out how they get there.”

There are some simple steps to look after the lining of your nose that Professor St John suggests people can take now if they want to lower their risk of potentially developing late-onset Alzheimer’s disease.

“Picking your nose and plucking the hairs from your nose are not a good idea,” he said.

“We don’t want to damage the inside of our nose and picking and plucking can do that. If you damage the lining of the nose, you can increase how many bacteria can go up into your brain.”

Smell tests may also have potential as detectors for Alzheimer’s and dementia says Professor St John, as loss of sense of smell is an early indicator of Alzheimer’s disease. He suggests smell tests from when a person turns 60 years old could be beneficial as an early detector.

“Once you get over 65 years old, your risk factor goes right up, but we’re looking at other causes as well, because it’s not just age—it is environmental exposure as well. And we think that bacteria and viruses are critical.”

Abstract

Chlamydia pneumoniae can infect the central nervous system via the olfactory and trigeminal nerves and contributes to Alzheimer’s disease risk

Chlamydia pneumoniae is a respiratory tract pathogen but can also infect the central nervous system (CNS). Recently, the link between C. pneumoniae CNS infection and late-onset dementia has become increasingly evident.

In mice, CNS infection has been shown to occur weeks to months after intranasal inoculation. By isolating live C. pneumoniae from tissues and using immunohistochemistry, we show that C. pneumoniae can infect the olfactory and trigeminal nerves, olfactory bulb and brain within 72 h in mice. C. pneumoniae infection also resulted in dysregulation of key pathways involved in Alzheimer’s disease pathogenesis at 7 and 28 days after inoculation. Interestingly, amyloid beta accumulations were also detected adjacent to the C. pneumoniae inclusions in the olfactory system.

Furthermore, injury to the nasal epithelium resulted in increased peripheral nerve and olfactory bulb infection, but did not alter general CNS infection. In vitro, C. pneumoniae was able to infect peripheral nerve and CNS glia.

In summary, the nerves extending between the nasal cavity and the brain constitute invasion paths by which C. pneumoniae can rapidly invade the CNS likely by surviving in glia and leading to Aβ deposition.

How does a mouse pick his nose?

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  • Never thought nose picking can be so deadly. Here you thought covid and guns were so deadly. Well this is the new monster that we are facing today. Nose picking goblins! We should send our military to fight these nose pickers and flick their boogers right back at them for justice! For freedom! They are mucusizing our nations and giving our people post traumatic nasal drip syndrome. We must stop these nose picker terrorists now! We need to enforce the Emergencies Act before it’s too late!

    Don’t even reach for that booger clinging on that nose hair Trudeau!!! You nose what will happen to you. Look at what the nose picking did to Joe Biden. He’s forgotten a lot of things, short term memory. He’s a goner, can’t even get off stage. It’s so confusing for him.

    As a preventive measure, let’s introduce a nose mask for only the nose, and put another mask over the nose for extra caution. In the mean time the develop a nasal vaccine to shove it up in both nostrils to a minimum of 4-5 inches deep. Until the patient gives a signal of a yelp or an ow to indicate that the nurse or doctor can then spray in each nasal passage for the most effective result.

    Virologists can then do more “research” and create a new deadly nose picking variant.

    Oopsie we “accidently” created a new nose picking pandemic for everyone. Come get your new nose vaccine booster everyone! Please everybody no need panic this one isn’t as deadly as the first one. But we still want you to get it because we love you for your money… I mean we love you because we want you protected and everyone else protected around you too. So get your nose picking shot. Please, we’ll even pay you a 100 dollar gift card as an incentive for being cooperative. Only for a limited time.

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    1. Whatever… I live in a fairly dry climate and I get buggers that you couldn’t extract with a pickaxe sometimes… The ONLY thing that breaks them up is eating something spicy… That gets the snot moving some then I can blow all that crap out. The forest fire smoke season being the worst, so glad it is over.

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    2. You’re horrible, but I guess have well ventilated parties so the respiratory Chlamydia doesn’t wreck the quality of your 40+ years. The first thing in the paper, they cite that 90% of Alz. dead brains examined had that pneumonia’s DNA rummaging in them. The picking story’s just juice and knobs.

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    3. My husband and I got a kick out of your comments! Well-said!! You’ve got a great sense of humor..lol

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    4. Nice reply!
      It opens another question, what it may be the reason for the covid nose swabs?

      If the nose is a critical point to connect with our brain that may explain why the general forced use on people with the swabs to test “Covid” lie.
      It seems our noose is a highway to our brains!
      Maybe they are planning this story to blame what may come next, not everyone manage to evade the swabs sadly

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  • Hmm. You’d expect an association between cocaine use (intranasal) and Alzheimer’s in this case.

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    1. I don’t know if people who use cocaine live long enough to get Alzheimer’s

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    2. Well the cocaine users for before they get Alzheimer’s!

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    3. You’d expect a correlation with nasal zinc prophylaxis for colds also, whose dealers like answering questions a little bit more than cocaine dealers. On the other hand if you do the Zn nasal spray maybe cocaine after would be less risky w.r.t. C. pneumonia…

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  • I’m so glad this institute wasn’t involved in any diagnosis or rehab for by tbi… I would have ended up a vegetable, at best, for an absolute certainty… 💯

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  • No wonder boogers are know as nose goblins (or magical nose candy for kids).

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  • Is this for real?
    Picking one’s nose can actually lead to
    Memory loss?? Well
    I’m 60 yo and have picked and poked at my shnoze all my life, so I guess
    “I’m Screwed”! I just wonder when it will start, does your study say anything about that???

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    1. The thing’s free to read. Mental acuity or blood tests for amyloid plaques, ask your g.p. sometime after you’re 32 and especially after bouts with pneumonia.

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  • I would really be interested in the research done by Professor James St John, Head of the Clem Jones Center for Neurobiology and Stem Cell Research, is a co-author of the world first research. I saw no citation for his research anywhere in this article. I read the scientific report by Sheng Liu and saw nothing that related to this article except the mention of amyloid being detected in parts of the brain as a possible indicator of Alzheimers. Most of the report talked about using deep learning to help detect two different types of dementia using MRI images more effectively. That’s what I got out of it anyway.

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    1. I was also curious about authenticity here. Particular that St John was referred to as Professor and not Doctor. Turns out that he does have a PhD, in Agricultural Science. Not sure how you can consider yourself a neurobiologist without a relevant degree.

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  • If nose picking could be problematic, then the daily RAT tests many of us have been required to complete could presumably also be increasing our risk

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    1. this is exactly what I was thinking

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  • I wonder, if checked, would those with Alzheimers have noses in worse conditions than similar people without?

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  • In humans, the olfactory nerves snake through the cribiform plate of the ethmoid bone that lies on the roof of the nasal cavity and back several inches from the nostril openings. It is difficult to see how plucking nostril hairs would expose the nerves to bacteria. Moreover, unless you stick the full length of your index finger up into your nose, it is hard to see how nose picking would do that.

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    1. Scott, plucking hairs or damaging your nasal passages increases risk for bacterial activity because it gives the bacteria (which are there all the time and also introduced by your finger from your entire environment) a route into your bloodstream. Plucking hairs anywhere on your body increases risk for infection and causes inflammatory reactions. Get it? Plucked hairs are far more likely to get infection in the hair follicle than hairs that are left the heck alone.

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      1. Yeah, I get it. But the theory describes unique entry through the olfactory nerves which are in the cribiform plate. It is not due to blood borne infection.

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  • Here’s a link to the correct article. Oopsies, I forgot to put link in.
    https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-022-06749-9

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  • A (one) bacterium, two bacteria.

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  • A BBC article yesterday said Ren primate species were known to be nose pickers and there was a definite health benefits to it. Your article says it causes memory loss. The obvious thing it does is act as a babe repellant. That’s not always a bad thing. To paraphrase Shakespeare, “To pick, or not to pick, that is the question!”

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    1. What a sensationalist stretch. First, the research used a mouse model involving a beta-amyloid reaction to the bacterium. No cognitive effects were proposed or measured. Second, beta-amyloid probably has an antibacterial function, so it was doing what it was supposed to do. Third, Alzheimer’s has been associated with accumulation of amyloid aggregates, not necessarily native amyloid monomers, as were secreted here. And finally, it’s a long way from a mouse secreting amyloid to concluding that abrading olfactory epithelium raise the risk of Alzheimer’s in people.

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      1. In fact newer research points to amyloid plaques not even being related to the onset of Alzheimers, so I agree this research is unnecessary and stupid. Although every piece of research adds to our understanding of everything.

        Reply

  • Source neurosciencenews.com

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