wpinstitute.org, May 9, 2011:
we believe that it is vitally important that investigators interested in furthering the understanding of blood borne XMRV as a human pathogen use a proven positive clinical isolate as the control when developing tests to detect this newly discovered human retrovirus.
WPI and the U.S. clinical laboratory performing XMRV tests pursuant to a license agreement with WPI
have extensive controls in place to prevent and detect contamination.
Approximately three thousand
tests have been performed on patient samples to date using clinically validated tests; about one third
have been found to be positive. Multiple sequences from these three thousand samples have been
submitted to GenBank® and are awaiting publication.
It is critical, in light of these findings, that all
treatment decisions are left to physicians and their patients, including the use of antiretrovirals.
While WPI researchers acknowledge that there is still much to be learned about the lifecycle and in vivo
reservoirs of this family of human gamma retroviruses, we remain confident in the results reported in
Science by Lombardi et al.
Most importantly, we are committed to human gamma retroviral research in
neuro-immune disease and will continue to offer our help to the medical and scientific community when