XMRV Research

Science magazine reported that the NIH grant to investigate XMRV will remain at the Whittemore Peterson Institute with Dr. Vincent Lombardi as the new principal investigator. (“Embattled Institute Retains Major Grant to Study Chronic Fatigue Syndrome”) (2/8/12) This story was also reported in The Scientist (2/9/12). David Tuller continued his thorough coverage of CFS in a new story published in the New York Times, “Fallout From Fatigue Syndrome Retraction Is Wide,” that summarized the state of events and emotions in the community following the December 2011 retractions of the studies linking XMRV and related retroviruses to the illness. He interviewed well-known patient advocates Heidi Dunlap Bauer and Rivka Solomon and scientists Drs. Fred Friedberg and John Coffin. (2/6/12) This article was also linked to from Journal Watch (2/7/12) and The Atlantic (2/7/12). Member of the Association’s Scientific Advisory Board and Columbia University virology professor Dr. Vincent Racaniello penned a fascinating post on Discover Magazine’s “The Crux” blog that compares and contrasts the differences and difficulties of establishing a viral connection between HIV/AIDS and CFS. He caps his brief history of both illnesses by asking, “Why have investigators failed to identify a virus behind CFS?,” noting that it’s not due to a lack of viable technology, and theorizing answers. (“A Tale of Two Viruses: Why AIDS Was Pinned to HIV, but Chronic Fatigue Remains a Mystery“) (1/12/12) Dr. Ian Lipkin, director of the Center for Infection and Immunity at Columbia University and lead researcher for the NIH’s XMRV study, posted a note to the CFS community on the Center’s blog. “A Message from CII Director W. Ian Lipkin Regarding the XMRV/MLV CFS/ME Study” notes that the study will continue and points out that “…any finding related to a retrovirus, whether infectious or noninfectious, genetic material, protein, or antibody, may provide insights into disease or allow development of diagnostic tests even if a causative relationship is not established.” He also acknowledges criticism about the study continuing in the face of the retraction of the XMRV and MLV papers in “Science” and “PNAS” and responds: “For those who continue to express concerns that this study is an inappropriate use of resources in a challenging fiscal environment, please be assured that more than 85% of the funding associated with this initiative is invested in patient recruitment and characterization and sample collection, archiving, and distribution. Thus, irrespective of study outcome there will be unprecedented opportunity to explore hypotheses other than that disease is due to XMRV or MLV infection.” (12/28/11) The paper, “Detection of MLV-related virus gene sequences in blood of patients with chronic fatigue syndrome and healthy blood donors,” published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science in August 2010 by NIH researchers Shyh-Ching Lo, Harvey Alter and colleagues was retracted in the publication’s Dec. 27 issue. Following on the heels of the Dec. 24 retraction of the paper published in Science linking CFS to the retrovirus XMRV, this retraction strikes down the last remaining relationship between them. The authors note that their results were reproducible in their own labs and that they have no evidence of contamination, but cite four concerns: “the original CFS patient samples were of insufficient volume to distribute to other laboratories for independent confirmation; only one of many laboratories has found a similar association between polytropic murine leukemia viruses (pMLV) and CFS …; our attempts, through collaborations, to demonstrate antibody in affected patients, to isolate the virus by culture, or to show integration sites in the human genome have failed to support the initial findings; and while recall of eight patients from the original cohort 15 y later showed pMLV gag sequences in seven, the copy number was very low and phylogenetic analysis showed these sequences were not direct descendents of the original dominant strains.” (12/26/11) This story has been reported in numerous outlets including The New York Times (12/26/11), MedPage Today (12/26/11), Retraction Watch (12/26/11), virology blog (12/26/11), Third Age (12/27/11), MedCity (12/27/11), .US News & World Report (12/27/11), HealthDay (12/27/11), The Huffington Post (12/27/11) , The Wall Street Journal (12/27/11), About.com (12/27/11), Genome Web (12/27/11), Newsday (12/27/11), Science (12/28/11), The Medical News (12/28/11), Nature (12/28/11), Doctors Lounge (12/28/11), NPR (12/30/11), The Scientist (1/3/12), ABC News Australia (1/6/12) and Science (1/7/12). “In a Rare Move, Science Without Authors’ Consent Retracts Paper That Tied Mouse Virus to Chronic Fatigue Syndrome,” reports Science magazine on the ScienceInsider website ahead of the December 23 print issue. Citing issues with other labs’ ability to replicate the findings from the original paper published in October 2009 and “evidence of poor quality control,” Editor Bruce Albers states that the magazine’s editors have “lost confidence in the Report and the validity of its conclusions.” (12/22/11) This article has been reported in multiple outlets including Nature (12/22/11), Bloomberg (12/22/11), virology blog (12/22/11), The Wall Street Journal (12/22/11), Reuters (12/22/11), Retraction Watch (12/22/11), The Chicago Tribune (12/22/11), The Associated Press (12/22/11), ars technica (12/22/11), Scientific American (12/22/11), The Huffington Post (12/22/11), NPR (12/22/11), The Washington Post (12/22/11), MedPage Today (12/22/11), New Scientist (12/22/11), Discover (12/22/11), Time Magazine (12/22/11), genomeweb (12/22/11), Medical Xpress (12/22/11), BBC News (12/22/11), CBS News (12/22/11), Yahoo (12/22/11), msnbc (12/22/11), UPI (12/22/11), The Los Angeles Times (12/23/11), MedIndia (12/23/11), The Medical Daily (12/27/11), Fox News (12/28/11), DailyRx (12/31/11) and ScienceNews (12/31/11). Columbia virology professor Vincent Racaniello included comments about XMRV in a his keynote address, “The World of Viruses,” given at the 22nd Annual Brazilian Virology Society. He posted the audio and video on his popular virology blog. (10/27/11) Website SciVerse reported on a study, “Investigation of xenotropic murine leukemia virus-related virus (XMRV) in human and other cell lines,” published in the journal Biologicals and conducted by U.S. Food and Drug Administration researchers that sought to “… evaluat[e] XMRV contamination in cell lines handled in laboratory research and particularly those used in the manufacture of biological products.” They examined at least six different cell lines and determined that “The results indicated the absence of XMRV in the cell lines tested …” (10/12/11) 7th Space Interactive posted “Xenotropic Murine Leukemia Virus-Related Virus is Not Associated with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome in Patients from Different Areas of the US in the 1990s,” the results of a study published in Virology Journal that “… determined the prevalence of XMRV in patients with CFS from similar areas in the United States as the original 2009 study, along with patients with chronic inflammatory disorders and healthy persons. … Using quantitative PCR, we initially detected very low level signals for XMRV DNA in 15% of patients with CFS; however, the frequency of PCR positivity was no different between patients with CFS and controls. Repeated attempts to isolate PCR products from these reactions were unsuccessful.” Using a variety of other methods in addition to Q-PCR, the researchers concluded that, “We found no definitive evidence for XMRV DNA sequences or antibody in our cohort of CFS patients, which like the original 2009 study, included patients from diverse regions of the United States. In addition, XMRV was not detected in a cohort of patients with chronic inflammatory disorders.” (9/24/11) Science magazine published a package of stories about XMRV and CFS, including the long-awaited results of the Blood XMRV Scientific Research Working Group (SWRG)’s Phase III study: “Failure to confirm XMRV/MLVs in the blood of patients with chronic fatigue syndrome: A multi-laboratory study.” In this study, none of the 19 assays used by nine participating labs was able to distinguish previously XMRV/MLV-positive CFS cases from healthy blood donors or pedigreed negatives on the basis of results for XMRV or the larger family of murine leukemia viruses. A “Partial Retraction” of data from the original XMRV paper (published in Science in 2009) by the Cleveland Clinic’s Robert Silverman and a full-length narrative article summarizing the history of XMRV from discovery to date accompany the SWRG study results. These materials are all available to Science subscribers or on a pay-per-view basis; we’ll update the links below if they become openly available. (9/22/11) This package of stories has been reported in hundreds of other outlets, including Retraction Watch (blog) (9/22/11), NIH News (9/22/11), The Washington Post (9/22/11), The Scientist (9/22/11), The New York Times (9/22/11), US News & World Report (9/22/11), MSN Health (9/22/11), NPR (9/22/11), The Wall Street Journal (9/22/11), Bloomberg (9/22/11), BBC News (9/22/11), LiveScience (9/22/11), MyHealthNewsDaily (9/22/11), ScienceNews (9/22/11), Journal of the American Medical Society (paid subscription only) (11/2/11) and LabTestsOnline (11/4/11). “Failure to confirm XMRV/MLVs in the blood of patients with chronic fatigue syndrome: A multi-laboratory study.” “Partial Retraction.” “False Positive.” Web site 7th Space Interactive reported on a study published in Virology Journal titled, “ XMRV: Usage of Receptors and potential Co-receptors.” The researchers described the study: “Although XMRV is thought to use XPR1 for cell entry, it infects A549 cells that do not express XPR1, suggesting usage of other receptors or co-receptors. To study the usage of different receptors and co- receptors that could play a role in XMRV infection of lymphoid cells and GHOST (GFP- Human osteosarcoma) cells expressing CD4 along with different chemokine receptors including CCR1, CCR2, etc., were infected with XMRV. Culture supernatants and cells were tested for XMRV replication using real time quantitative PCR. Infection and replication of XMRV was seen in a variety of GHOST cells, LNCaP, DU145, A549 and Caski cell lines. The levels of XMRV replication varied in different cell lines showing differential replication in different cell lines. However, replication in A549 which lacks XPR1 expression was relatively higher than DU145 but lower than, LNCaP. XMRV replication varied in GHOST cell lines expressing CD4 and each of the co- receptors CCR1 – CCR8 and Bob. There was significant replication of XMRV in CCR3 and Bonzo although it is much lower when compared to DU145, A549 and LNCaP.” They concluded, “XMRV replication was observed in GHOST cells that express CD4, and each of the chemokine receptors ranging from CCR1- CCR8 and Bob suggesting that infectivity in hematopoietic cells could be mediated by use of these receptors.” (9/6/11) NPR aired “Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Still a Medical Mystery” on “Morning Edition.” In this segment, correspondent Joanne Silberner interviews Harvard’s Dr. Anthony Komaroff, a CFS clinician and researcher; and CFS patients Dr. Katrina Berne and Cynthia Johnson, who described life with the illness and the affects the XMRV story has had on media coverage and perception of CFS. (9/5/11) John Coffin, PhD, a professor of molecular biology and microbiology at Tufts University and author of one of the recent negative XMRV studies, answered questions in “His work has gone viral,” an interiew published in The Boston Globe. He discusses XMRV and his research into a connection between HERV-K and breast cancer. (7/18/11) A brief item published in the July issue of Scientific American asked, “Donor Fatigue: Should Blood Banks Reject Chronic Fatigue Sufferers?” It summarized the controversy surrounding the connection between XMRV and CFS and noted that “…experts are weighing whether or not to test donated blood.” (7/4/11) British newspaper The Daily Mail reported on “XMRV and CFS—the sad end of a story,” a comment published on the website of The Lancet. In it, researchers from the Netherlands conclude that, based on numerous negative studies, XMRV is not the much hoped-for cause of CFS. Other outlets also published articles about the comment, including the website of Consumer Reports, The Telegraph, and websites Pulse and Medical News Today. (6/21/11) The NatureNews website of Nature magazine published “Chronic fatigue syndrome: life after XMRV,” a look at the future of research into the field in the wake of the recent doubt cast on the original link between the retrovirus and CFS. (6/3/11) “Retrovirus No Longer Thought to Be Cause of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome” from Scientific American provided an easy-to-understand summary of the XMRV studies published in Science. Perhaps more important to CFS patients and those who care about them, however, is the article’s validation of the seriousness of the illness. (6/1/11) The Wall Street Journal‘s Health blog published a post by Amy Docker-Marcus that questioned the editor and authors of the Lo, et al. study published in August 2010 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science about the impact of the Science papers and retraction request. ( “Given Doubt Cast on CFS-XMRV Link, What About Related Research?”) (6/1/11) The authors of the negative XMRV studies published in Science magazine and CFS patients were interviewed in this look at the latest research and its impact on the community, “Report deals blow to fatigue sufferers,” from The Boston Globe. (6/1/11) The New York Times‘s David Tuller continued his CFS converage with a story titled “2 Studies Examine Syndrome of Fatigue,” an examination of the XMRV studies published in Science. (6/1/11) Writing on the “Shots” blog, NPR’s Richard Knox said, “Two new studies may not be the final nails in the coffin of the hypothesis that a mouse retrovirus called XMRV causes chronic fatigue syndrome. But the hammering is certainly getting louder.” (“Doubts Rise Over Virus As Cause Of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome”) (5/31/11) The Science Now website of Science magazine included “New Data Spark Retraction Request for Chronic Fatigue Virus Study,” detailing the editors’ request for the authors of the original XMR/CFS publication to voluntarily retract that study. (5/31/11) An article by HealthDay reporter Amanda Gardner about the package of XMRV stories published in the journal Science ran in U.S. News & World Report; on websites MSN, Health.com, iVillage and DoctorsLounge; and numerous other media outlets. (“Studies Refute Virus’ Link to Chronic Fatigue Syndrome”) (5/31/11) The BBC’s James Gallagher reported on the “‘Concern’ over ME/viral research.” The article on the broadcaster’s website outlined the unease of the editors of Science over two negative XMRV papers published in the journal. (5/31/11) Wire service Reuters published “Mouse virus doesn’t cause chronic fatigue: reports,” noting, “A mouse virus called XMRV, which has been fingered as a cause of chronic fatigue syndrome, is likely not responsible for the mysterious disease, according to two studies released on Tuesday.” (5/31/11) The Washington Post and numerous other media outlets ran “New studies say XMRV virus that was latest chronic fatigue suspect probably was a false alarm,” an Associated Press story that detailed the two negative XMRV papers and accompanying editorial in Science. (5/31/11) The Washington Post‘s Science Writer Brian Vastag penned “Reports: Mouse virus doesn’t cause chronic fatigue syndrome,” a follow-up article that includes comments from several researchers involved in the XMRV papers published in Science. (5/31/11) “Chronic Fatigue Study That Sparked Ban May Have Been Flawed,” reported Bloomberg News about the most recent negative XMRV papers published in the journal Science. (5/31/11) Virology Blog author Professor vincent Racaniello updated his previous “XMRV is a recombinant virus from mice” post to include the latest details from the latest Science papers. (5/31/11) The Wall Street Journal‘s Amy Dockser Marcus published two stories on the package of XMRV studies and commentary published online on the Science Express website ahead of print publication in the journal Science. (5/31/11) “Chronic-Fatigue Paper Called Into Question” “New Doubt Cast on Study of Chronic Fatigue” US News & World Report, Yahoo! News, Newsday and the DoctorsLounge each ran a HealthDay story about the negative findings of XMRV in CFS patients and healthy volunteers reported in the Journal of Virology (“Study Finds No Link Between XMRV Virus, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome“). (5/12/11) The Chicago Tribune‘s Trine Tsouderos reported on the Whittemore Peterson Institute’s response to the Singh study, noting that “Researchers stand by findings linking XMRV to chronic fatigue syndrome.” The article also appeared in the Baltimore Sun and the Los Angeles Times. (5/11/11) Writing in the paper’s Booster Shots blog, Trine Tsouderos of the Chicago Tribune explained the implications of the Singh study in a story titled “New study on potential link between XMRV and chronic fatigue syndrome finds, again, nothing.” The article also appeared in the Baltimore Sun and the Los Angeles Times. (5/6/11) Nature’s Ewen Callaway followed his February story on XMRV with a comment (“More questions over link between XMRV and chronic fatigue syndrome”) on the Ila Singh-authored study of well-defined CFS patients that found no evidence of a relationship with XMRV. (5/5/11) The Wall Street Journal maintained its interest in CFS and XMRV with another Health blog post by Amy Dockser Marcus, “Study Finds No Link Between XMRV and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome,” about the negative Journal of Virology paper. (5/4/11) “Ila Singh finds no XMRV in patients with chronic fatigue syndrome,” explained Columbia Professor of Virology Dr. Vincent Racaniello in an analysis of her paper, “Absence of XMRV and other MLV-related viruses in patients with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome,” published in Journal of Virology. (Virology Blog) (5/4/11) The Spring issue of the Stanford University Department of Medicine’s newsletter, Newsmakers in Medicine, devotes a full page to a profile of CFS clinician and researcher Dr. Jose Montoya and the new Chronic Fatigue Initiative. “Hope For Chronic Fatigue Syndrome” details his look into various pathogens that might cause the illness and reports on his research using the anti-viral Valcyte to treat CFS patients. (Story begins on page 5.) (May 2011) UroToday, a urology news service, provided an update to the urology field on XMRV in “Beyond the Abstract – Evidence and controversies on the role of XMRV in prostate cancer and CFS.” (Registration is required to access the article, but it’s free.) (4/14/11) The chief medical officer of Lifescript, a website dedicated to women’s health, wrote about CFS and XMRV on the HealthBistro website in “The Mystery of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.” (3/28/11) The Wall Street Journal’s Amy Dockser Marcus continued her series of articles about CFS, highlighting a broad range of research to unlock its mysteries in “Seeking Biological Causes of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.” (3/22/11) Trine Tsouderos of the Chicago Tribune penned “New research rattles hopes for many patients with chronic fatigue syndrome,” an article about XMRV, CFS and the current status of research on the association between them. (3/17/11) Nature, one of the world’s most prestigious science journals, covered XMRV, CFS and the continued debate in “Fighting for a cause” by Ewen Callaway. (3/16/11) The story was accompanied by an editorial, “Cause for Concern.” (3/16/11) Callaway participated in a Nature podcast; read the transcript. (3/17/11) “A Virus of Interest,” an article about XMRV research, appeared in the Winter 2011 issue of Emory Medicine, a magazine about Emory’s research and medical programs. (3/9/11) The ScienceNOW website (from Science Magazine) reported on the presentation at the 18th Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections (CROI) meeting that suggested XMRV is a recombination of two mouse virus sequences in “Fresh Doubts About Connection Between Mouse Virus and Human Disease.” (3/8/11) Amy Dockser Marcus covered the report of the Blood XMRV Scientific Research Working Group published in Transfusion on the Health Blog of the Wall Street Journal’s website. (“XMRV and the Blood Supply: More Study Needed”) (3/7/11) Science podcast “This Week in Virology” (“TWiV 123: Contaminated prostates, absolute truth, and bleached worms”) covered XMRV and the Garson paper and noted the Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections (CROI) presentations. The hosts discussed the contamination issue and experiments that should be done to “sort it out.” (3/6/11) Virology professor Dr. Vincent Racaniello explained a paper about XMRV integration sites in prostate tumors in “Authenticity of XMRV integration sites,” a post on his Virology Blog. (3/2/11) Amy Dockser Marcus of the Wall Street Journal wrote about the animal model study of XMRV infection on the paper’s Health Blog. (“XMRV: Study Shows Virus Can Cause ‘Persistent Infection’ in Monkeys”) (2/17/11) Columbia virology professor Dr. Vincent Racaniello blogged about an XMRV study of Rhesus macaques published in the Journal of Virology on his Virology Blog. (“XMRV infection of Rhesus macaques”) (2/17/11) The Wall Street Journal’s Amy Dockser Marcus described a report by the AABB Interorganizational XMRV Task Force published in the journal Transfusion about XMRV and blood transfusion and studies being conducted by the American Red Cross. (“XMRV: Testing the Blood Supply”) (1/20/11) Science magazine reported on the latest XMRV studies and events, with quotes from several experts about the December 2010 Retrovirology articles and other studies in “Studies Point to Possible Contamination in XMRV Findings.” (1/6/11) Virology Blog writer Dr. Vincent Racaniello examined a 2008 study by researchers at Cleveland Clinic and UCLA (“Retroviral integration and the XMRV provirus”). (1/4/11) New York Times writer David Tuller outined the current status of CFS research and the association with XMRV/MLV-related viruses in “Exhausted by Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, and Its Doubters.” (1/4/11) The first 2011 episode of the popular science podcast “This Week in Virology,” “Ten Out of ’10,” summarized 10 virology stories from 2010, beginning with XMRV/CFS/prostate cancer. (1/2/11)

Tags: February 9, 2012
  • my boss was wanting a form a few weeks ago and came across a great
    service that hosts 6,000,000 forms . If others want it too , here’s a https://goo.gl/OtpYV3.