During 1960, nerve toxins – the so called BMAA were linked to ALS.  Many of the Guam Island residents suffered from a disease very similar to ALS that later showed to be linked with their food mainly from the flour of the seeds the cone palm and the bats’ meat that contained BMAA.  These toxins were originated from the blue green Algiers, which lived in the soil.

For people who live in Scandinavia and Europe, it is well known that there are plenty of these nerve toxins in the Baltic Sea and also in the food they eat and that they may be harmful to their health.  The blue green Algiers living in the Baltic Sea bloom during the Summer time.  Their blooming is caused by cyanobacteria and produce the nerve toxin BMAA, that may cause neurological diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease.

Aim

To determine if nerve toxins, such as BMAA, which is contained in certain fish and shellfish, may cause Alzheimer’s disease.

Results/Conclusion

A new American research study on apes showed that even small amount of the BMAA has caused changes in the Brain’s nerve cells similar to changes in Alzheimer disease and the same changes that were seen in the residents of Guam Island. There is a possibility that they even lead to dementia. Another study at Uppsala University in Sweden, showed that with high doses of BMAA on mice gives nerve damage. The study also suggests that these nerve injuries later in the newborn mice causes worsening learning ability and behavioral changes.

BMAA has shown to be linked to neurological diseases such as Alzheimer and ALS. BMAA is water soluble, yet exist in the food chain and can be found in the crab, fish and clams in Swedish seafood. It is not exactly known if high dose of BMAA are taken in the food. Scientists mean that it is not quite likely that very high doses are taken through the organisms in the water and are transferred to the food. It is also very controversial if BMAA may be linked to dementia as well.

Reference

  • Cox et al. 2016. Dietary exposure to an environmental toxin triggers neurofibrillary tangles and amyloid deposit in the brain”, Proc. R. Soc. B. 283 20152397.
  • by Maryam Memarpouri, M. Sc.