Lyme and dopaminergic function: Hypothesizing reduced reward deficiency symptomatology by regulating dopamine transmission

  • Blum K
  • J Modestino E
  • Febo M
  • et al.
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Abstract

The principal vector of Lyme disease in the United States is Ixodes scapularis: black legged or deer ticks. There is increased evidence that those infected may be plagued by anxiety or depression as well. Researchers have identified transcripts coding for two putative cytosolic sulfotransferases in these ticks, which recognized phenolic monoamines as their substrates. It is hypothesized that protracted Lyme disease sequelae may be due to impairment of dopaminergic function of the brain reward circuitry. The subsequent recombinant proteins exhibited sulfotransferase function against two neurotransmitters: dopamine and octopamine. This, in itself, can reduce dopamine function leading to many Reward Deficiency Syndrome behaviors, including depression and possibly, anxiety. In fact, it was shown that activity of Ixosc Sult 1 and Sult 2 in the Ixodid tick salivary glands might contain inactivation of the salivation signal through sulfonation of either dopamine or octopamine. This infraction results in a number of clinically observed mood changes, such as anxiety and depression. In fact, there are common symptoms observed for both Parkinson and Lyme diseases. The importance of understanding the mechanistic and neurobiological effects of Lyme on the central nervous system (CNS) provides the basis for pro-dopamine regulation as a treatment. WC 195.

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Blum, K., J Modestino, E., Febo, M., Steinberg, B., McLaughlin, T., Fried, L., … D Badgaiyan, R. (2017). Lyme and dopaminergic function: Hypothesizing reduced reward deficiency symptomatology by regulating dopamine transmission. Journal of Systems and Integrative Neuroscience, 3(3). https://doi.org/10.15761/jsin.1000163

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