Further verification of the lack of correlation between Lyme disease and deaths due to Alzheimer’s disease

21 September 2015

In 2014, O’Day and Catalano published a JAD article presenting statistical evidence that Lyme disease was not a cause of Alzheimer’s disease [1]. A recent report by Phillip J. Baker, Ph.D., who is the Executive Director of the American Lyme Disease Foundation, has validated this conclusion using different statistical methodology and more recent data [2]. To quote Dr. Baker, “An analysis of the data by linear regression analysis generates a correlation coefficient of 0.0753 (t= 0.262 for 12 degrees of freedom; p >0.05. This indicates no direct relationship between the incidence of Lyme disease and deaths due to Alzheimer’s disease in States that account for >95% of all reported cases of Lyme disease in the U.S.” Like the original article by O’Day and Catalano, Baker’s report adds further arguments against unsubstantiated claims for presence of the Lyme disease vector, Borrelia burgdorferi, in Alzheimer’s disease brains. In conclusion it is hoped that these two independent studies can put to rest any concern that Lyme disease is a direct cause of Alzheimer’s disease.

Danton H. O’Day, Professor Emeritus, Department of Biology, University of Toronto Mississauga and Department of Cell & Systems Biology, University of Toronto, Canada

[1] O’Day DH, Catalano A (2014) A lack of correlation between the incidence of Lyme disease and deaths due to Alzheimer’s disease. J Alzheimers Dis 42, 115-118.
[2] Baker PJ (2015) Does Lyme disease play a significant role in the etiology of Alzheimer’s disease?, http://aldf.com/lyme-disease/#misinformation, Last updated September 18, 2015, Accessed September 21, 2015.