Klebsiella Bacteria and Th1 Immune Dominance

By on May 12, 2019 in Apraxia |

Who else has had moments when things just start clicking? When you start recurrently seeing the same things through various research tracks you have taken? I don’t know whether to get excited or cry right now!

We recently got the results of Rory’s uBiome Explorer test, and while Rory’s gut is actually in pretty good shape with a lot of really positive things happening, the Klebsiella bacteria has reared its ugly head again. It showed up on her stool test as dysbiotic last June and while I can’t compare apples to apples to see if it’s higher or lower now because the tests are very different (her POOP is definitely better now than it was then), it’s definitely still there in higher quantities than the average person (0.36% compared to around 0.01% from what I have seen from friends).

I have fallen down a Klebsiella rabbit hole. Turns out it can cause SIBO-D (SIBO with diarrhea), and I know a fair amount about SIBO from our time on the Nemechek Protocol. But the catch? Klebsiella really likes inulin, so while I’ve been feeding the “birds” on Nemechek, I’ve apparently also been feeding this super nasty “fish” as well. There is likely Hydrogen Sulfide Dominant Dysbiosis in play as well, since Rory’s bad bacteria (among them Klebsiella and Enterobacter) and even one of Rory’s beneficial bacteria (Akkermansia) produce hydrogren sulfide, and since I have a homozygous CBS mutation and Glenn has a heterozygous one, we know that Rory very well might share my homozygous CBS, which would also contribute.

But my main takeaway from my research today is that overgrowth of Klebsiella can cause Th1 immune dominance which causes inflammatory reactions.  And while we have recognized that inflammation is a major issue for Rory, we’ve never really been able to pinpoint the source, instead just recognizing that we can mitigate symptoms with anti-inflammatories, but can’t really seem to get at the root cause.

Th1 cells are what is known as cell-mediated immunity and help us fight off Gram-negative bacteria, mycobacteria, and viruses. When our body comes into contact with these organisms or has a chronic infection or overgrowth of them, the Th1 cells of our immune system become active. Inflammation occurs, and certain cytokines are released to try to help deal with the infection, TNF-a, IFNy, and IL-2. In chronic infections or overgrowth, our Th1 cells remain overactive and cause dominance in our immune system. Certain symptoms occur including, inflammation and brain fog after ingesting food (usually after a few hours), brain fog, fatigue (sometimes after meals and from exposure to sunlight), SIBO, IBS, joint pain, inflammation, hypothyroidism (low T3), rosacea, reduction in frequency of colds and infections, and ulcers. There are “autoimmune diseases” that are linked to Th1 dominance.

From this list,  Rory definitely has this unexplained inflammation (though I have never related it to her food ingestion before), SIBO, low T3, and reduction in frequency of colds and infections.

So assuming this Th1 immune dominance is in play, we would have to be careful with which probiotic strains we introduce to Rory because some strains increase that Th1 response.  So…probiotic strains that may help people with Th1 issues, Bifidobacterium breve, L. delbrueckii subsp. bulgaricus, L. helveticus R389, S. thermophilus.  

Per this article, there are some antibacterial agents that can reduce Klebsiella (link over there for their specific product recommendations):

And also supplements that will help reduce Th1 induced inflammation:

They also have a whole protocol that I will be researching further, along with some additional dietary recommendations to help mitigate these issues.

Coming full circle, one of the things that has helped Rory immensely with her awful poop was the introduction of CBD oil in December.  In fact, that has been the almost-magical recipe for formed stools.  Turns out CBD oil may also help relieve Th1 dominance, so we may have been treating it without even knowing it.

I am curious to explore some of these other supplements to see which one(s) might be helpful for Rory, and while it makes me nervous to take away the inulin that I suspect has been helping with her better poop, I think we also need to discontinue that for a bit, and maybe we will try adding back in fish oil again, though I suspect that may have been making her poop worse before.  And maybe even do another round of Rifaximin to replace the inulin.  Per the stool test last year, the three dysbiotic bacteria that showed up there (two Klebsiella and one Enterobacter) also respond well to Grapefruit Seed Extract and also Silver.  So those might be in Rory’s future as well…we had discussed with her MAPS doctor doing another round of Rifaximin to attack the dysbiotic bacteria and then starting the GSE at the end of the round and continuing with it afterward to help continually attack them.  But we put that off since we were just about to start stem cells and Rifaximin is an anti-inflammatory.  I’m less concerned about anti-inflammatories affecting the stem cells now though (since there are so many conflicting opinions on them). So many things to think about and consider.