July 31, 2015 at 5:07 pm #877FrostParticipant
I was wondering if there is any extensive information on the following two questions:
(1) Does hyaluronic acid play a significant role in symptoms development in Ehler-Danlos syndrome?
(2) Do people with Ehler-Danlos syndrome have a LOWER chance of getting cancers?
Here’s a little background story to partially explain the motivation behind these questions.
My idea started with observing the wonderful animal naked mole-rat (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Naked_mole-rat). Superficially, naked mole-rat seems to have very sparse hair, and very elastic skin. More systemically, naked mole-rat has altered skin pain sensitivity (it is less sensitive), altered thermoregulation (no thermoregulation), and altered histamine-induced itching (it is lower).
All of these things are often modified in EDS people too, although sometimes in the OPPOSITE way. So, while the skin tends to be more elastic, and thermoregulation decreased, as in the naked mole-rat, on the other hand, the pain sensitivity tends to be higher in many types of EDS, as can be histamine-related problems. This indicates that maybe there is a LINK between our symptoms and those of the wonderful naked mole-rat!
NOW, the traits I have mentioned in the naked mole-rat are NOT all well studied, so that it is not know what processes cause them. However, some of the traits (and maybe in the future more will be shown too) are related to the HYALURONIC ACID (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hyaluronan). This molecule fills-in the intercellular space, influencing significantly some bodily processes and traits, such as distance between the cells, inflammation, wound repair, etc. In the case of the naked mole-rat, the molecule is much longer and heavier than in humans. In a way, it is MORE ABUNDANT in the intercellular space.
Could it be that the molecule is more abundant in (some) types of EDS, as well? It seems the answer is: YES!
There have been 2 studies in my knowledge that have identified that the same molecule (hyaluronic acid) is MORE ABUNDANT in some type of EDS (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/2420112, http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0945053X1300098X ).
Now, if hyaluronic acid does play a significant role in EDS symptoms, it is obviously complicated. Nevertheless, given the presence of this molecule almost everywhere in the body, one does wonder how many of our symptoms are directly/indirectly caused by potentially increased (or maybe in some EDS types decreased?) amount of the molecule. For example, does this molecule interact with local anaesthetics?
What is interesting about the naked mole-rat is a high longevity, and essentially no risk of cancer! While some of the aforementioned traits in the rat have not been shown to be directly caused by the hyaluronic acid, the essentially zero risk of cancer has been shown to be more directly caused by the hyaluronic acid. This brings me to the second question: Is there a study looking at cancer rates in people with EDS? Could it be that EDS people have a LOWER risk of cancer, due to the building up of the hyaluronic acid? Without any knowledge, one might expect EDSers to have an increased risk of cancer, due to an increase in inflammatory processes they tend to experience.
Thanks for the time!August 2, 2015 at 12:09 pm #5585Dr. DianaKeymaster
You know, I’ve seen people talk about this for a couple of years now, but I don’t *think* much has come from it, honestly. I have a feeling it will be a red herring for most of us. Having said that, we could absolutely use more research in all of these areas. 😉
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