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ORIGINAL HYPOTHESIS
Year : 2012  |  Volume : 3  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 138-141

Nanobacteria in clouds can spread oral pathologic calcifications around the world


1 Independent Research Scientist, Founder and Managing Editor of Dental Hypotheses, Isfahan, Iran
2 Department of Dental Biomaterials, University of Sydney, Australia
3 School of Engineering and Materials Sciences, Queen Mary University of London, London, United Kingdom

Date of Web Publication5-Feb-2013

Correspondence Address:
Jafar Kolahi
N0 24, Faree 15, Pardis, Shahin Shahr, Isfahan, Postal Code: 83179 18981
Iran
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Source of Support: JK has editorial involvement with Dent Hypotheses. This work is not attributed to Department of Dental Biomaterials, University of Sydney, Australia, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/2155-8213.106837

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  Abstract 

Introduction: Nanobacteria (calcifying nanoparticles, nanobes) are one of the most controversial issues in contemporary biology. Studies show accumulating evidence on association of nanobacteria with oral pathologic calcifications such as calculus, pulp stone, and salivary gland stones. The Hypothesis: Experiments have shown that nanobacteria are excreted from the body in urine and saliva, lifted from the ground by winds into the cloud, and transit between the high humidity region of the clouds and the relatively dry inter-cloud regions. Remnants of a sticky protein coating that nanobacteria make it act as an extremely efficient cloud condensation nuclei. Following condensation of cloud, nanobacteria return to the earth via rain and snow. Evaluation of the Hypothesis: Transmission of nanobacteria via clouds is not surprising when compared with cosmic transmission of nanobacteria. The apatite mineral layer around the organism serves as a primary defence shield against various seriously life-threatening conditions. A double defence with the apatite layer and an impermeable membrane combined with a very slow metabolism is a likely explanation for the resistance of nanobacteria.

Keywords: Calculus, clouds, nanobacteria, oral pathologic calcification, pulp stone, salivary gland stones


How to cite this article:
Kolahi J, Shahmoradi M, Sadreshkevary M. Nanobacteria in clouds can spread oral pathologic calcifications around the world. Dent Hypotheses 2012;3:138-41

How to cite this URL:
Kolahi J, Shahmoradi M, Sadreshkevary M. Nanobacteria in clouds can spread oral pathologic calcifications around the world. Dent Hypotheses [serial online] 2012 [cited 2019 Dec 5];3:138-41. Available from: http://www.dentalhypotheses.com/text.asp?2012/3/4/138/106837


  Introduction Top


Nanobacteria (calcifying nanoparticles, nanobes, or nanobacterium) are one of the most controversial issues in contemporary biology. [1] They are 80-500 nm in diameter, typically have coccoid, coccobacillar, or bacillar form [Figure 1]. They have hydroxyapatite shell, cellular membranous structure, and central cavity and can form microscopic colonies. Nanobacteria divide by binary fission, fragmentation, or gemmation and can form thermo-resistant biofilms. They are Gram negative and can be stained by DNA-specific dyes. Doubling time is 3 days; their metabolism is 10,000 times slower than in  Escherichia More Details coli and they calcify under physiological pH. [2]
Figure 1: Nanometer-scale spheroidal features because of nanobacterial biomineralization. Photo courtesy of John Lieske, Mayo Clinic College of Medicine

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There has not been a comprehensive study to credibly determine whether nanobacteria are one of the smallest self-replicating forms of life on Earth, or they represent mineralo-protein complexes termed as calcifying nanoparticles, bearing no relation to bacteria. Proponents of both theories put forward a number of arguments, often mutually exclusive, in favor of the validity of their own hypotheses. [2]

Nanobacteria has reportedly been found in animal [3],[4] and human blood, [5] bile, [6] tissue culture, [7] wastewater, [8] Australian sandstones, and in the stratosphere. [9]

However, studies show accumulating evidence on the association of nanobacteria with human diseases. The disease-causing mechanisms of nanobacteria include the known effects of calcium on blood vessels, blood coagulation, and thrombus formation; elevation of intracellular (Ca 2+ ) levels and its consequences (stimulation of either apoptotic cell death or uncontrolled cell growth which could potentially contribute to tumoral growth or malignancies); induction of autoimmune diseases; inflammation; arthritis; and pathological calcification. [1] Nanobacteria shelter themselves from the immune system and the antibodies (calcific semidormant defence) and they can live where other bacteria cannot (extremophilic defence) because of their calcific defence. They have been implicated in the formation of pathogenic calcifications, e.g., kidney stones, arterial plaque, and calcification of coronary arteries and cardiac valves. [2]


  Nanobacteria and Oral Pathologic Calcifications Top


Literature and evidence on the role of nanobacteria in oral diseases are at a rather hypothetical stage with scarce studies both in vitro and in vivo to culminate sufficient reliable evidence. Following the detection of nanobacteria and the theory of nanobacteria-mediated pathologic calcification, Cifticoglu [10] and Demir [11] suggested that nanobacteria may be involved in the formation of pathologic deposits on the tooth surface [Figure 2]. Thereafter, Zhang et al,[12] have detected nanobacteria from the gingival crevicular fluid and calculus of subjects with periodontal disease. Hence, topical anti-nanobacterial therapy was suggested to be useful for prevention of periodontal diseases. [13]
Figure 2: Nanobacteria are thought to contribute to tooth plaque. Top photo: Courtesy of Brenda Kirkland nanobacterial plaque formation on a tooth; Lower photo: Courtesy of Cory Lambert nanobacteria on an unerupted wisdom tooth. Photos courtesy of the Mississippi State University Nannobacteria Image Gallery

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Badry et al,[14] examined the role of nanobacteria in the recurrent salivary gland stones formation using immunodetection with nanobacteria-specific monoclonal antibodies and scanning electron microscopy. Both techniques detected nanobacteria in 68.8% of the patients with salivary gland stones compared with normal controls where the particles were detected only in 20%. Based on this significant difference, they proposed that salivary stone formation is a nanobacterial disease initiated by bacterial infection. [14] Furthermore, Zeng et al, [15] detected and isolated nanobacteria from a high percentage of dental pulp stones, suggesting that nanobacteria might play an important role in the calcification of dental pulp. In addition, Yang et al,[16] evaluated nanobacteria's effects upon human dental pulp cells. They observed the ultrastructural variation in human dental pulp cells which were attacked by nanobacteria. The spatial relationship of human dental pulp cells and nanobacteria after coculture was also identified by immunofluroscence staining. Moreover, it was verified by MTT (3-(4,5-Dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide, a yellow tetrazole)viability assay ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MTT_assay ) that nanobacteria isolated from dental pulp stones exerted cytotoxic effect on human dental pulp cells. Therefore, it could be concluded that the existence of nanobacteria might interfere with the normal physiologic function of the cells, and that might lead to dental pulp calcification. [16]


  The Hypothesis Top


Studies on freshly fallen snow suggest that vitality level of microorganisms in clouds and the spreading of airborne diseases might be much more common than suspected. [17] It has been shown that microbes can safely travel long distances in clouds. Biological particles do seem to play a very important role in generating snowfall and rain, especially at relatively warm cloud temperatures. Most rain-making bacteria make their living as plant pathogens, breaking the cell walls of the plants that they feed on. It is quite plausible that the organisms might be using their ice-nucleating ability to get out of the atmosphere. [17] These findings are not surprising. The idea that bacteria can travel distances in clouds and then return to Earth had been developed more than one decade ago by Hamilton et al. [18]

Nevertheless, current models predict that the elevation of the Earth's surface temperature because of global warming is accompanied by a warming of the troposphere, and a thickening cloud cover associated with longer lasting clouds, in particular over land. These effects can have an instant impact on the vitality level of microorganisms in clouds and the spreading of airborne diseases. [19]

Experiments have shown that nanobacteria are excreted from the body in urine and saliva, lifted from the ground by winds into the cloud, and transit between the high humidity region of the clouds and the relatively dry inter-cloud regions, leading to oscillations between a dormant state and one of activation. Remnants of a sticky protein coating that nanobacteria make act as extremely efficient cloud condensation nuclei, with a tendency to aggregate to clusters upon contact. [20] Following condensation of cloud, nanobacteria return to the earth via rain and snow.

Of more interest, nanobacteria can even arrive from space [21] via space travels or meteorites or interstellar dusts. [22]

Recent environmental scanning electron microscope images showed a huge number of nanoparticles collected in the stratosphere via balloon. [19] They were virtually indistinguishable from nanobacteria isolated from mammalian sources: The absolute set of seven morphologic parameters (size, shape, size distribution, interconnection, chain arrangement, conglomeration, and cracking in apparently mineral shells) was identical to the analogous structures regarded as characteristic of nanobacteria, both in vitro and in vivo. It has been shown that not only can more than 1,000 nanovesicles form on a substrate, but also larger clumps can be formed by their aggregation. The presence of this aggregation supports the hypothesis that under favorable conditions, e.g., in clouds, nanobacteria can use their slime to form larger clumps. Such giant hydrophilic nuclei would serve as ideal cloud condensation nuclei, with a potential to finally form larger rain drops, thus allowing nanobacteria to reach the surface of the Earth in a viable state. [19]

Hence it seems logical to argue that occurrence of nanobacteria in clouds could play an important role in the global dispersal of oral pathologic calcifications such as formation of calculus, pulp stone, salivary gland stones, etc [Figure 3].
Figure 3: Schematic diagram of circulation of nanobacteria-induced diseases via clouds. Also nanobacteria even can arrive from space via space travels or meteorites or interstellar dusts

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  Evaluation of the Hypothesis Top


It is hard to believe that airborne nanobacteria bring us oral pathologic calcifications such as calculus. How can they be alive in the stratosphere? How such organisms can tolerate high solar intensity coupled with high irradiation intensity?

Transmission of nanobacteria via clouds is not as surprising as the cosmic transmission of them. [22] Nanobacteria can tolerate harsh conditions extremely well. The apatite mineral layer around the organism serves as a primary defence shield against various critical life-threatening conditions. A double defence with the apatite layer and an impermeable membrane combined with a very slow metabolism is likely to be the reason for the resistance of nanobacteria. [23]

 
  References Top

1.Kajander EO. Nanobacteria-Propagating calcifying nanoparticles. Lett Appl Microbiol 2006;42:549-52.  Back to cited text no. 1
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2.Kutikhin AG, Brusina EB, Yuzhalin AE. The role of calcifying nanoparticles in biology and medicine. Int J Nanomedicine 2012;7:339-50.  Back to cited text no. 2
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3.Barr SC, Linke RA, Janssen D, Guard CL, Smith MC, Daugherty CS, et al. Detection of biofilm formation and nanobacteria under long-term cell culture conditions in serum samples of cattle, goats, cats, and dogs. Am J Vet Res 2003;64:176-82.  Back to cited text no. 3
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4.Breitschwerdt EB, Sontakke S, Cannedy A, Hancock SI, Bradley JM. Infection with Bartonella weissii and detection of Nanobacterium antigens in a North Carolina beef herd. J Clin Microbiol 2001;39:879-82.  Back to cited text no. 4
    
5.Wang XJ, Liu W, Yang ZL, Wei H, Wen Y, Li YG. The detection of nanobacteria infection in serum of healthy Chinese people. Zhonghua Liu Xing Bing Xue Za Zhi 2004;25:492-4.Li Y, Wen Y,   Back to cited text no. 5
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6.Yang Z, Wei H, Liu W, Tan A, et al. Culture and identification of nanobacteria in bile. Zhonghua Yi Xue Za Zhi 2002;82:1557-60.  Back to cited text no. 6
    
7.Ciftcioglu N, Kajander EO. Interaction of nanobacteria with cultured mammalian cells. Pathophysiol 1998;4:259-70.  Back to cited text no. 7
    
8.Kim BH, Park HS, Kim HJ, Kim GT, Chang IS, Lee J, et al. Enrichment of microbial community generating electricity using a fuel-cell-type electrochemical cell. Appl Microbiol Biotechnol 2004;63:672-81.  Back to cited text no. 8
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9.Wainwright M, Weber P, Smith J, Hutcheon I, Klyce B, Wickramasinghe N, et al. Studies on bacteria-like particles sampled from the stratosphere. Aerobiologia 2004;20:237-40.  Back to cited text no. 9
    
10.Ciftçioðlu N, McKay DS, Kajander EO. Association between nanobacteria and periodontal disease. Circulation 2003;108:e58-9.  Back to cited text no. 10
    
11.Demir T. Is there any relation of nanobacteria with periodontal diseases? Med Hypotheses 2008;70:36-9.  Back to cited text no. 11
    
12.Zhang SM, Tian F, Jiang XQ, Li J, Xu C, Guo XK, et al. Evidence for calcifying nanoparticles in gingival crevicular fluid and dental calculus in periodontitis. J Periodontol 2009;80:1462-70.  Back to cited text no. 12
    
13.Kolahi, J. Anti-nanobacterial therapy for prevention and control of periodontal diseases. Dent Hypotheses 2010;1:4-8.  Back to cited text no. 13
    
14.Badry AAE, Mokbel MAM, Mofty IE, Mohamed AH. Nanobacteria: An Infectious Cause for Salivary Stone Formation and Recurrence. Clin Med Insights Ear, Nose and Throat 2010;3:17-21.  Back to cited text no. 14
    
15.Zeng J, Yang F, Zhang W, Gong Q, Du Y, Ling J. Association between dental pulp stones and calcifying nanoparticles. Int J Nanomedicine 2011;6:109-18.  Back to cited text no. 15
    
16.Yang F, Zeng J, Zhang W, Sun X, Ling J. Evaluation of the interaction between calcifying nanoparticles and human dental pulp cells: A preliminary investigation. Int J Nanomedicine 2010;6:13-8.  Back to cited text no. 16
    
17.Schiermeier Q. Rain-making bacteria found around the world. Nature News, 2008. Available from: http://www.nature.com/news/2008/080228/full/news.2008.632.html. [Last accessed on 2012 Sep 01].  Back to cited text no. 17
    
18.Hamilton WD, Lenton TM. Spora and Gaia: How microbes fly with their clouds. Ethol Ecol Evol 1998;10:1-16.  Back to cited text no. 18
    
19.Sommer AP, Wickramasinghe NC. Functions and possible provenance of primordial proteins-Part II: Microorganism aggregation in clouds triggered by climate change. J Proteome Res 2005;4:180-4.  Back to cited text no. 19
    
20.Cardiff University. Nanobacteria in clouds could spread disease, 2005. Scientists Claim. Science Daily. Available from: http://www.sciencedaily.com-/releases/2005/04/050429125650.htm. [Last retrieved on 2012 Sep 19].  Back to cited text no. 20
    
21.Wickramasinghe JT, Wickramasinghe NC. A Cosmic Prevalence of Nanobacteria? Astrophys Space Sci 2006;305:411-3.  Back to cited text no. 21
    
22.Kolahi J. Cosmic transmission of periodontal, cardiovascular and kidney diseases via nanobacteria. Dent Hypotheses 2011;2:49-54.  Back to cited text no. 22
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23.Björklund M, Ciftcioglu N, Kajander EO. Extraordinary survival of nanobacteria under extreme conditions. Part of the SPIE Conference on Instruments. Methods and Missions for Astrobiologv. San Diego, Calitornia July 1998 SPIE Vol. 3441 Available from: http://www.nanobiotech.us/storage/8%20Bjorklund.%201998.%20Proc%20SPIE%203441_123-129.pdf. [Last accessed on 2012 Sep 01].  Back to cited text no. 23
    


    Figures

  [Figure 1], [Figure 2], [Figure 3]


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Introduction
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