Association between Piscine Mycobacteriosis and Morgellons Disease: Literature Review
Asian Journal of Research in Dermatological Science,
Piscine Mycobacteriosis (PM) or sometimes called fish tuberculosis, is a deadly zoonotic disease found in both fresh and marine fish throughout the world. More than 20 strains of Mycobacterium spp. are known to cause PM, but their pathogenesis is currently unclear. This is a chronic progressive disease with a variety of clinical symptoms including skin ulcerations, loss of color, scoliosis, and weight loss. Advanced technical molecular methods have now allowed us to different Mycobacterium to the individual species level. Out of the 20 known strains, M. marinum is the commonest and the most pathogenic organism and it is found in marine and freshwater fish. Morgellons Disease (MD) is a multi-system disorder where patients commonly present with multiple, non-healing, cutaneous wounds. Patients report seeing multi-colored filaments/fibers under the skin and often provide samples to the clinician. However, most clinicians thought this is a delusional disorder and treated the patients with antidepressant drugs. However, recent studies have linked MD with systemic manifestations of Lyme Disease (LD). Other studies have found correlation between MD and tick-borne co-infections. Despite these studies, the definite causative agent of MD has not yet been confirmed. Since the clinical symptoms of PM and MD are somewhat similar, it could be hypothesized that PM and MD could be related to each other. Therefore, the objective of this literature review is to find any link between PM and MD based on the current literature available. However, it should be noted that there is no study done specifically looking into this hypothesis. The primary search engine used to find information for this review is PubMed and ScienceDirect. More than 30 research articles and case reports were reviewed and only 19 were shortlisted and used as references. None of the studies were limited to study design, number of participants or the study year. However, only articles written in English language were considered for this review.
- Morgellons Disease
- piscine Mycobacteriosis
- Borrelia spirochetes
- Mycobacterium marinum
How to Cite
Spickler AR, Dvorak G. Piscine mycobacteriosis,” The Center for Food Security & Public Health. 2020;1–10.
Keller C, et al. Piscine mycobacteriosis – Involvement of bacterial species and reflection in pathology,” Schweiz. Arch. Tierheilkd. 2018;160(6):385–393.
Decostere A, Hermans K, Haesebrouck F. Piscine mycobacteriosis: A literature review covering the agent and the disease it causes in fish and humans,” Vet. Microbiol. 2004;99(3–4):159–166.
Savely VR, Stricker RB. Morgellons disease: The mystery unfolds, Expert Rev. Dermatol. 2007; 2(5):585–591.
Savely VR, Leitao MM, Stricker RB. The mystery of Morgellons disease: Infection or delusion?,” Am. J. Clin. Dermatol. 2006;7(1):1–5.
Hashish E, et al. Mycobacterium marinum infection in fish and man: Epidemiology, pathophysiology and management; a review,” Vet. Q. 2018;38(1):35–46.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Lyme Disease; 2020.
Pearson ML, et al. Clinical, epidemiologic, histopathologic and molecular features of an unexplained dermopathy,” PLoS One. 2012;7(1):e29908.
Middelveen MJ, Morgellons Disease: A Chemical and Light Microscopic Study,” J. Clin. Exp. Dermatol. Res. 2012;03(01).
Stricker R, Middelveen M, Mayne P, Kahn, Characterization and evolution of dermal filaments from patients with Morgellons disease,” Clin. Cosmet. Investig. Dermatol. 2013;6(1).
Middelveen MJ, et al. Classification and staging of morgellons disease: Lessons from syphilis,” Clin. Cosmet. Investig. Dermatol. 2020;13:145–164.
Slany M, et al. Mycobacterium marinum infections in humans and tracing of its possible environmental sources,” Can. J. Microbiol. 2012;58(1):39–44.
Akram S, Aboobacker S. Mycobacterium Marinum, StatPearls Publishing; 2021. Availaable:https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK441883/ (accessed Sep. 11, 2021).
Middelveen MJ, et al. Exploring the association between Morgellons disease and Lyme disease: Identification of Borrelia burgdorferi in Morgellons disease patients, BMC Dermatol. 2015;15(1):1–14.
Vemulakonda LA, Tschen JA. Slow-growing and Linearly Spreading Cutaneous Lesion: Often Misdiagnosed Mycobacterium Marinum Infection,” Cureus. 2019;11(2):2–7.
Delghandi MR, El-Matbouli M, Menanteau-Ledouble S. Mycobacteriosis and infections with non-tuberculous mycobacteria in aquatic organisms: A review,” Microorganisms. 2020;8(9):1–18.
Moyer N. Morgellons Disease, Healthline; 2021.
Availaable:https://www.healthline.com/health/morgellons-disease (accessed Sep. 11, 2021).
Aung-Din D, Sahni DR, Jorizzo JL, Feldman SR. Morgellons disease: Insights into treatment,” Dermatol. Online J. 2018;24(11):0–4.
Abstract View: 135 times
PDF Download: 38 times