Catherine Purzycki and Daniel Shain. Fungal toxins and multiple sclerosis. A Compelling connection. Brain Research Bulletin 2010;82:4-6.
D Pisa et al. Fungal infection in cerebrospinal fluid from some patients with multiple sclerosis. European Journal of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Disease 2013;32:795-801.
The exact causes/ triggers for multiple sclerosis are not well known. Exposure to viral infection, smoking, and domestic animals, and lack of vitamin D from diet or sunlight have all been linked to higher levels of multiple sclerosis. Another trigger for multiple sclerosis may be exposure to fungi (molds) and their mycotoxins.
Many common fungi including Candida and Aspergillus produce a mycotoxin called gliotoxin. Injection of gliotoxin into laboratory rats have been shown to produce MS. Gliotoxin is very toxic to astrocytes or oligodendrocytes in cell culture (astrocytes and oligodenocytes play a critical role in building and protection the myelin sheaths). One study reported that gliotoxin was found in the urine of 35 of 38 MS patients.
Another study reported that high antibody levels of Candida were found in the cerebrospinal fluid or blood serum of 9 out of 12 MS patients.This suggests that Candida infection of the cerebrospinal fluid or blood may play an important role in the development of MS.
Much more research is needed on possible relationships between fungi (molds), mycotoxins and development of multiple sclerosis.