Monday, December 21, 2009

News on Important New Studies Underway

Since the initial findings of the link between XMRV and ME/CFS became public in October, a flurry of new research has ensued.  The study at the top of the list is currently underway at Uppsala University to try and replicate the findings of the Whitemore Peterson Institute in Swedish patients.  The study is very well organized, however it's findings could be a mixed blessing: XMRV findings may be different in European cohorts, meaning that other closely related retroviruses might be discovered if new studies are pursued.  Dr. Jonas Blomberg's real-time PCR assay might just be what is required to find these viruses.

Another study is currently underway to determine the atomic structure of XMRV protease at one center.  This study was initiated after a link was made to XMRV in certain prostate cancer cell lines.  Crystals of the protein have been grown, however this is only a first step: heavy metal derivatives must be produced, and crystals must be found that will diffract to a sufficient resolution to obtain useful data for drug development - a process that is still months away.

Another study is currently getting underway at Cornell University that will seek to determine retroviral diversity in ME/CFS patients, and try and correlate the findings with functional status in CFS patients.  The project is being done in collaboration with the Whitemore-Peterson Institute and the Columbia University Center for Infection and Immunity.

Another study is getting underway at Instituto de Biologia Molecular en Medicina y Terapia Genica, Universidad de Guadalajara to determine if infecting peripheral monocyte cell lines in culture with XMRV alters the 2-5A synthethase/RNASE L pathway, and the resulting differential cytokine expression.  I don't understand spanish, so it would be appreciated if someone who does could dig up more information for me!


  1. In all the justified excitement about XMRV there are many of us who have been wrongly diagnosed with ME/CFS/Fibro who have found that our symptoms respond to antibiotics and infact go on to be diagnosed with Lyme Disease.
    I realise this is not your area of specialism but I am sure you will be interested in looking at website and hopefully be open minded enough to see what has been going on which has allowed so many of us to have had their LD diagnosis overlooked.
    The NICE guidelines say that LD should be ruled out before a diagnosis of ME/CFS but sadly with the current state of the testing upto 50% false negative many patients are not being diagnosed.The IDSA guidelines are currently under review details can be seen on their website which show this is not as simple an illness as IDSA/HPA would have us think.

  2. Do you mean Guadalajara in Spain or in Mexico?
    We ,Spanish ,don´t know nothing about studies in our country, except a little one in Barcelone, which is not in course yet, in the IFR Institut Ferran de Reumatologia a private clinic.

  3. I can get Spanish translation for you, but I can't find anything linking to the study. Can you post the link here?

  4. I am sure you will be interested in looking at website and hopefully be open minded enough to see what has been going on which has allowed so many of us to have had their LD diagnosis overlooked.

  5. Guadalajara, Mexico

  6. Sign the Petition
    "Tell the DHHS to allow the NIH and FDA to publish their papers without undue procedures and hurdles. Preventing these papers from being published diminishes the trust of CFS Patient groups in the CDC and its willingness to deal honestly with this disease. To allow CFS patients and those with Prostate Cancer the best hope of fighting their illness, we must have the best scientific information that our government is capable of producing. Allow the findings to be released with all speed and tell the DHHS to stop playing politics with science."