Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Treating Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CFS): XMRV

The scientific evidence that a retrovirus is implicated in CFS opens a new world of possibilities for so many people. Scientists can now begin the important work of translating this discovery into medical care for individuals with XMRV related diseases.” Annette Whittemore

Treatment information is still decidedly sketchy. At the Reno Conference Annette Whittemore evoked the possibility that the Institute was on the road to uncovering unusual drugs that would prove helpful and indeed the Institutes uncovery of similar immune system dysfunctions in ME/CFS patients and cancer patients opened the door to anti-cancer drugs.

Now the discovery of a retrovirus opens the door to anti-retroviral drugs. Some of these drugs come, however, with a considerable downside - potentially devastating side effects - and may offer a viable solution only for a few. The WPI will be assessing the effectiveness of antiretroviral drugs in some ME/CFS patients. Dr. LeGrice of HIV/AIDS and Cancer Virology at the NIH stated that despite its retroviral roots XMRV is different enough from HIV that new kinds of drug will be needed.
The WPI has displayed, however, considerable optimism regarding the creation of new drugs to treat this infection stating One wonders if their optimism derives from the fact that the XMRV virus is much more primitive than the HIV retrovirus.


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