ANTIBIOTIC REGIMEN TARGETING PERSISTER CELLS
PUT 45% OF LONG-TERM PATIENTS IN REMISSION FOR AT LEAST A YEAR
In 2020 Dr. Richard Horowitz published a case study of 3 Lyme patients with multi-year histories of relapsing and remitting Lyme Disease and co-infections, and a chart review of 37 patients who had been ill for at least one year. All patients had been diagnosed by either an EM rash or lab testing, and their symptoms had persisted despite traditional antibiotic therapy for Lyme and treatment from multiple healthcare practitioners.
All patients were treated with an 8 week course of a protocol built around the antibiotic Dapsone, which has been proven to be extremely effective in vitro against persister (antibiotic-resistant) cells of Borrelia Burgdorferi, the causative agent of Lyme Disease.
98% (39 of 40) of the patients symptoms improved after eight weeks of the dapsone protocol, with 45% remaining in remission (resolution of all tick-borne illness symptoms) for 1 year or longer. The original 3 patients to try the protocol remained in remission for 2-3 years at the time the study was published, and no patients symptoms worsened after stopping therapy.
While 40 patients is a small sample size, the results are extremely promising and warrant a large scale clinical trial. The CDC currently has no treatment guidelines for patients experiencing persistent symptoms.
This overwhelmingly positive response to the Dapsone protocol implies persistent infections may play a huge role in persistent symptoms. The 55% who did not reach remission for a year had active co-infections, suggesting better treatment is needed for persistent co-infections.