Monday, January 10, 2011

There have been strong hints of retroviral infection in ME/CFS since the mid-1980s

Hillary Johnson said...:

Actually, there was nothing terribly surprising about the discovery of a new human retrovirus in a large majority of chronic fatigue syndrome patients. There have been strong hints of retroviral infection in the disease since the mid-1980s, when reverse transcriptase was identified in blood samples.

In 1991, PNAS published sequences of a novel retrovirus in patients and their close contacts; that same year, retrovirologists in New Zealand found retroviral fragments in patients. The Science paper you think is an example of failed peer review actually underwent extensive peer review by the top MLV retrovirologists in the U.S.

So far, not a single scientist or lab in the world has been able to suggest with any legitimacy that the Science data--any part of it--is faulty or requires retraction. Five countries have since banned blood donations from CFS sufferers on the basis of the Science data you think was a mistake.

Suggest you read the Science paper and the PNAS paper of August by Lo et. al. to discover why and how you've got this story backwards.

Also, for your future reference should you continue to opine on this topic, CFS is a neurodegenerative disease marked by multiple opportunistic infections, immune system destruction and high rates of lymphoma/leukemia that lasts not for months, as you state, but forever once acquired.

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