Chronic Fatigue Syndrome NEWS
14 June 2012 - Criminal Charges dropped - the Nature blog is one of many online sources quoting this story. After the furore caused over the original arrest Nature blog is now reporting:
“Judy Mikovits is free. Criminal charges against the embattled scientist for stealing lab notebooks, computers and other material from her previous employer were dropped on 12 June by Richard Gammick, the District Attorney of Washoe County, Nevada . The news was first reported yesterday by ProHealth. Mikovits still faces a civil suit filed by the Whittemore Peterson Institute for Neuroimmune Disease (WPI) in Reno, Nevada. A Washoe County Judge, Brent Adams, ruled against Mikovits in that case on 19 December (see Institute claims victory in civil suit against Judy Mikovits), but Adams recused himself when it emerged that he had accepted campaign contributions from Harvey Whittemore, the husband of WPI’s president Annette Whittemore. Meanwhile, Harvey Whittemore faces federal charges of making illegal campaign contributions. He has pled not guilty. Read on at the Nature blog
May 2012 - University Awarded ME Research Grant. Two north east universities have been awarded a grant to conduct new research into the condition ME or Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS). Newcastle and Northumbria Universities, along with Sheffield University, have been given £61,000 by the charity Action for M.E for three pilot projects. Researchers at Newcastle have been awarded more than £25,000 for a study looking at muscle dysfunction in ME. The team, led by Dr Phil Manning and Prof Julia Newton, also hope to develop a drug pre-testing system. Read On externally
8 May 2012 - Fewer than 1 in 3 health trusts offering adequate care for ME sufferers - read on at the Telegraph online
26 April 2012 - Low Brain Activity Seen in Chronic Fatigue - Medpagetoday reported - Patients with chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) had significantly less activation of the basal ganglia in response to a known stimulus compared with a control group, investigators reported. This study was published as an abstract and presented at a conference. These data and conclusions should be considered to be preliminary until published in a peer-reviewed journal. Read On externally
1 March 2012 - Chronic fatigue syndrome: Web therapy 'can help' - The BBC reports. Web-based treatment may be better at helping teenagers with chronic fatigue syndrome, according to a study by scientists. Dutch researchers writing in The Lancet journal said 63% of those given psychotherapy online had reported making a recovery. This is almost eight times better than those given standard care. UK experts said the difference was "impressive", and showed that therapy given this way could be effective. Read on at BBC Online
12 February 2012 - Chronic fatigue seen in many previously infected with Q fever in the Netherlands - examiner.com reports. In 2007, the Netherlands began a large, drawn-out outbreak of Q fever, which resulted in thousands being infected and a dozen or so fatalities. In a study just released in the European Journal of Public Health, Dutch researchers show that many of those infected with Coxiella burnetti previously, now face chronic fatigue syndrome and other physical symptoms. Read on at examiner.com
7 February 2012 - The Center for the Biology of Chronic Disease (CBCD) believes discovery of Microcompetition advanced by Dr Hanan Polansky may explain the underlying biological mechanism causing the syndrome. Read On at mdnewswire
27 January 2012 - Cornell Studies Point to Oxidative Stress as Major Factor in ME/CFS Symptoms - Abstract:
Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) is a complex illness, which is often misdiagnosed as a psychiatric illness. In two previous reports, using (1) H MRSI, we found significantly higher levels of ventricular cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) lactate in patients with CFS relative to those with generalized anxiety disorder and healthy volunteers (HV), but not relative to those with major depressive disorder (MDD). Read On Externally
3 January 2012 - Another Chronic Fatigue Study Retracted - After Science pulls the original article linking a mouse virus to the chronic fatigue syndrome, PNAS follows suit, yanking the only other study supporting the link. Read on externally
3 January 2012 - Yoga Helps Breast Cancer Survivors Curb Fatigue from NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - About one third of breast cancer survivors experience fatigue that can affect their quality of life, but a small new study finds that doing yoga might help restore some lost vitality. After three months of twice-weekly yoga classes, a group of breast cancer survivors in California reported significantly diminished fatigue and increased "vigor." Read On externally
21 December 2011 - Scientists at the University of Liverpool are the first to use a new laboratory technique that could reveal the causes of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS). - Scientists at Liverpool are the first to implement a newly developed technique that is more sensitive to identifying mitochondrial function within the muscle’s fibres. Researchers anticipate that these new methods will demonstrate whether skeletal muscle mitochondria in patients with CFS are dysfunctional, which would result in muscle fatigue and further complications leading to chronic inflammation and pain. Read The Full Text
1 December 2011 - Up-regulation of TGF-beta1 mRNA expression in peripheral blood mononuclear cells of patients with chronic fatigue syndrome. Conclusion: The expression of TGF-beta1 in peripheral blood mononuclear cells is significantly elevated in patients with CFS. It might be correlated to the pathogenesis of the disease. Read On Externally
21 Nov 2011 - Trial of therapy for CFS as mitochondrial dysfunction at Columbia - ProHealth - Researchers at Columbia University will be recruiting soon for a trial of four nutrients that they believe have the potential to support improved mitochondrial energy production in Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CFS) patients. ... Read on Externally
18 Nov 2011 - American National Institutes of Health (NIH) encourages investigator(s)-initiated applications that propose to examine the etiology, diagnosis, pathophysiology, and treatment of chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), sometimes referred to as myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME), in diverse groups and across the lifespan. Applications that address gaps in the understanding of the environmental and biological risk factors, the determinants of heterogeneity among patient populations, the common mechanisms influencing the multiple body systems that are affected in ME/CFS are encouraged. Read the full expression externally
Chronic fatigue syndrome eased by cancer drug - Updated 10:17 20 October 2011 by Andy Coghlan in New Scientist Health. An anti-cancer drug could hold the key to treating chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS). Symptoms of the disease eased in 10 of 15 patients given rituximab, an anti-lymphoma drug. Rituximab works by destroying white blood cells that make antibodies, called B cells. The results of the trial therefore suggest that these white blood cells might be involved in causing CFS – a disorder also known as myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME), and one that has so far defied explanation. The research was jointly led by Øystein Fluge and Olav Mella at the Haukeland University Hospital in Bergen, Norway. Their team discovered by accident that rituximab might work against CFS after seeing symptoms ease in a patient who had both lymphoma and CFS . Read on externally and also this link to Usay Compare. The BBC also covered this story.
Dr Richard Fuller from The Dove Clinic commented “This is interesting research. It states that some people who underwent treatment for cancer using a monoclonal antibody that blocks CD20 on B cells of the immune system (usually used for lymphoma) could benefit from improved symptoms of underlying chronic fatigue syndrome. The same treatment has also been shown to benefit some people with auto-immune disease. At this stage more work is needed to define why this works. It has long been held that Chronic Fatigue Syndrome relates to a change in immune function which may have knock on effects on the body. If the mechanism can be more clearly defined then approaches that resolve the trigger for the immune response may be discovered rather than relying on medical strategies to suppress immune function, as these inherently cause other health problems.”
Chronic Pain Care for Women Cost Nearly $13 Billion in 2008 - This American report assesses the cost of CFS and was released: 10/20/2011 12:05 PM EDT - Source: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) - Newswise — An estimated 12.1 million women age 18 and older reported suffering from chronic pain in 2008 as a result of underlying medical conditions such as chronic fatigue syndrome, endometriosis, fibromyalgia and vulvodynia. Of these women Read on externally
In the mind or in the brain? Central sensitization in chronic fatigue syndrome by BiM on October 11, 2011 · Do you recall patients complaining of hypersensitivity to light, sound, cold, stress or mechanical pressure (e.g. jewellery on the neck)? This often relates to hypersensitivity of the central nervous system, a mechanism referred to as central sensitization. Brain orchestrated inhibitory mechanisms no longer work properly, while the brain activates descending fascilatory pathways. It’s like driving a Ferrari without brakes. Central sensitization is frequently present in a variety of chronic disorders like fibromyalgia, chronic whiplash associated disorders, osteoarthritis, irritable bowel syndrome and some cases of chronic low back pain. In the late nineties, it was first hypothesized that chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) is characterized by central sensitization as well. Follow external link for more
The Waning Conflict Over XMRV and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Science 30 September 2011 - Less than a day after a new study dealt what many consider a lethal blow to the controversial theory that a newly detected virus, XMRV, is linked to chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), proponents and skeptics of the theory squared off in a meeting. Judy Mikovits, the main champion of the idea that XMRV and its relatives play a role in CFS, didn't make the case for XMRV, but instead, she offered new evidence that people with CFS had a virus "highly related" to XMRV. Her opponent, heavyweight retrovirologist John Coffin Read More...
CFS Study is looking for Volunteers
28 September 2011 - London The Chronic Illness Research Team (CIRT), based at the University of East London, is conducting a study into cognitive functioning in adults with ME/CFS. Cognitive functions include memory, decision-making and planning. Individuals who suffer with chronic illnesses can experience greater difficulties in these areas such as memory lapses and concentration problems. To gain a greater insight into how ME/CFS can affect these cognitive processes, the Chronic Illness Research Team in conjunction with the University of East London is currently looking for individuals who have been diagnosed with ME/CFS to participate.
The purpose of the study is to help identify any differences in cognitive functions, such as working memory and decision-making, between individuals [who have] a diagnosis of ME/CFS and those who do not. The long-term aim of the study is to gain a greater insight into the difficulties an individual may experience due to ME/CFS which will lead to improving the quality of individuals’ lives through enhanced medical and therapeutic interventions. Read More....
New research effort into causes of chronic fatigue syndrome
September 27, 2011 -- Part of the new Chronic Fatigue Initiative, the research program will leverage the Center for Infection and Immunity's expertise in microbe hunting to shed light on possible infectious causes of the mysterious disorder. The Chronic Fatigue Initiative (CFI) — a new privately funded research directive focused on chronic fatigue syndrome — announced a substantial grant to a Columbia University research team to investigate the role of pathogens in causing chronic fatigue syndrome. The pathogen discovery and pathogenesis program will be led by Drs. Ian Lipkin and Mady Hornig of the Center for Infection and Immunity.
Chronic fatigue syndrome is a condition believed to affect about 1million Americans. It is characterized by symptoms similar to those of common viral infections and can include muscle aches, headache and extreme fatigue. Its cause is unknown. Established by a donation of more than $10 million from ... Read More...
CFS May Not be Caused By Mouse Virus
September 27, 2011 — A new study published in Science last week further discredits a controversial theory that a mouse virus may cause chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS). The theory surfaced in a study published 2 years ago in Science. Lead author Vincent Lombardi, PhD, from the Whittemore Peterson Institute in Reno, Nevada, and coauthors reported finding the xenotropic murine leukemia virus (MLV)–related virus (XMRV) in white blood cells in 67% of patients with CFS vs 3.7% of healthy control patients. Their research suggested that the debilitating disorder, viewed by some as psychosomatic, might have distinctly somatic origins amenable to a treatment or cure. Read More ..
CFS/ME Research Funding Announced
April 2011 - (from the Medical Research Council website) The Medical Research Council announced that up to £1.5M is available to support research proposals submitted against this call regarding CFS/ME. It is anticipated that between 2 and 4 awards will be made to further this research.
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome/Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (CFS/ME) is a complex and serious debilitating medical condition with a diverse range of symptoms. Profound physical and/or mental fatigue is the most well-known, while others include pain, disturbed sleep patterns and gastrointestinal problems. Each patient experiences their own personal combination of symptoms. CFS/ME research has been a high priority area for the MRC for some time. The development of this call for proposals has been informed by the work of the MRC Expert Group, (chaired by Professor Stephen Holgate), other experts in the field of CFS/ME and research leaders in aligned areas who have identified and prioritised medical research topics where the MRC might target efforts to encourage and support high-quality proposals. Details of MRC’s past activities related to CFS/ME research, including the development of research topics for this call for proposals, can be found on: http://www.mrc.ac.uk/Ourresearch/ResearchInitiatives/CFSME/index.htm
Focus of the call
CFS/ME is a complex, heterogeneous condition that comprises the interaction of different biological, physical and psychological mechanisms. Understanding these mechanistic pathways and the interactions between them is important in improving understanding of the condition. The focus of this initiative is to support high-quality, innovative medical research that increases the current knowledge base of CFS/ME; and on drawing in expertise and resources from related research fields. Applications must address the mechanisms underlying chronic changes related to CFS/ME, particularly focusing on one or more of the following areas:
Autonomic dysfunction: In CFS/ME evidence supports an association between the condition and various forms of hypotension, reduced heart rate variability, alterations in the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis and sympathetic stress response systems.
Cognitive symptoms: Cognitive problems are commonly reported in CFS/ME. These include impaired short-term working memory and thinking, difficulties with concentration and attention span, and impaired information processing.
Fatigue: Chronic disabling fatigue is a common, poorly understood phenomenon. There is a need to better understand the measurement and mechanisms of central (brain) and peripheral (muscle) fatigue and post-exertional malaise as well as the influence of complicating factors such as depression, sleep disorders and pain.
Immune dysregulation: There is evidence for a disturbance in innate and adaptive immunity in CFS/ME including alterations in cytokine profile, absolute and functional alterations in T cells and NK cells and occurrence of autoantibodies and allergic reactions that may explain some of the manifestations such as fatigue and flu-like symptoms. A number of infectious and environmental exposures have been associated as triggering these changes.
Pain: Headache, facial pain and myalgia are reported symptoms of CFS/ME that may involve altered sensory and/or cognitive processing in the relevant neural pathways.
Sleep disorders: Disordered sleep is a characteristic symptom in CFS/ME including, impaired daily sleep/wake rhythms and disrupted sleep, hypersomnia, insomnia, and secondary problems such as restless legs syndrome.
Expressions of interest were requested by 7 June 2011. We look forward to hearing further progress.
For full information visit - The Medical Research Council