Research 1st News | June 2015
June promises to be another milestone month in the history of our illness. On June 16, the National Institute of Health’s Pathways to Prevention report on Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome will be released.
The report comes three years after the NIH launched the process of including ME/CFS in the P2P program, which is executed through NIH’s Office of Disease Prevention. The program has a multi-pronged mission:
• to identify research gaps in a selected scientific area;
• to identify methodological and scientific weaknesses in that scientific area;
• to suggest research needs; and
• to move the field forward through an unbiased, evidence-based assessment of a complex public health issue.
Coming on the heels of the landmark Institute of Medicine report issued Feb. 10, the P2P report may
provide further validation that dramatically more ME/CFS research is desperately needed. While the
process and outcome of the P2P report have been imperfect, it is another stepping stone on the path of
making ME/CFS understood, diagnosable and treatable.
Carol E. Head
Solve ME/CFS Initiative
Antibodies as Biomarkers
Antibodies are proteins that are produced by one of the major classes of immune cells in our body called
B lymphocytes. Antibodies are designed to recognize and bind to molecules called “antigens.” Antigens
come from microorganisms including viruses, bacteria, fungi and parasites.
Antibodies bind to antigens of
microorganisms targeting them for destruction. Antigens can also come from molecules and proteins
within our body. Antibodies that bind to our own body’s antigens can result in autoimmunity. This
versatility means that antibodies make good biomarkers, too. Biomarkers are biological markers that can
be used for diagnosis and measuring response to treatment.
To read the full article, Go HERE
Harvard Research Using SolveCFS BioBank™ Samples Published in Science
Stephen J. Elledge from Harvard Medical School, together with his graduate student George Xu,
used samples from the SolveCFS BioBank™ in addition to blood samples from around the world
to look for antibodies against more than 200 different viruses.
The paper, “Comprehensive serological profiling of human populations using a synthetic human
virome,” was published June 5 by Science, one of the world’s top scientific journals.² Elledge and
his team developed a technology called “VirScan” to test blood samples for antibodies to 206
different viruses that infect humans, as well as more than 1,000 strains of these 206 viruses.
To read the full article, go HERE
SMCI Co-Hosts Research Roundtable in Boston
The Solve ME/CFS Initiative co-hosted a Research Roundtable May 2 with the Massachusetts CFIDS/ME
& FM Association. At the event, which was held at Newton Wellesley Hospital, Dr. Suzanne Vernon
provided an update on the research being conducted through SMCI’s Research Institute Without Walls
by some of the brightest investigators from the best medical institutions. Dr. Vernon also described the
exciting work being conducted through the SolveCFS BioBank™.
TO view THE powerpoint presentation from the event, go here
UVA Scientists Uncover Link Between the Brain and Immune System
Researchers at the University of Virginia Medical School have unearthed a groundbreaking discovery
demonstrating that the brain is directly connected to the immune system by newly discovered vessels.
The revelation, which was discovered by postdoctoral fellow Antoine Louveau, could have important
implications on the study and treatment of ME/CFS.
TO Read the full report, Go here
June 18 Webinar with Dr. Lily Chu
On June 18 at 1 p.m. EST, Lily Chu, MD, MS, will present her webinar: “Post-Exertional Malaise: History,
Characteristics and Research Findings.” To register for the webinar, go here.
Dr. Lily Chu is the co-vice president of the International Association for Chronic Fatigue
Syndrome/Myalgic Encephalomyelitis and one of the top ME/CFS experts in the world. In the webinar,
she'll provide background on the origination and evolution of PEM and offer pointers on how patients
can talk to their physicians about it for better understanding.
Mark your calendar for our other upcoming webinars:
July 16, 1 p.m. EST
Peter Rowe, M.D., Director, Chronic Fatigue Clinic, Johns Hopkins Children’s Center
October 15, 1 p.m. EST
Alan Light, PhD, Research Professor of Anesthesiology, University of Utah
December 17, 1 p.m. EST
Solve ME/CFS Initiative Year-End Research Review
Pathways to Prevention Update
The final report drafted by the panel that conducted the 2014 National Institutes of Health Pathways to
Prevention Workshop: Advancing the Research on Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue
Syndrome, will appear in print in the Annals of Internal Medicine and will be posted online on June 16, 2015. A draft of the report, which summarizes the workshop and identifies future
research priorities, is available here.
The workshop panel will hold a press telebriefing on Tuesday, June 16 at 11 a.m. Eastern time to discuss
its findings and answer questions from members of the media. All interested parties are welcome to
listen in, but the panel will only be accepting questions from members of the media.
For those who aren’t able to listen to the telebriefing, an audio playback will be available for a
FOR DETAILS, go HERE