The non-profit Enterovirus Foundation, created in November 2008 and led by top researchers in the field, is dedicated to funding research to detect, understand, and treat the stealthy enterovirus (EV) infections suspected of triggering/persisting in at least 26 different syndromes of unknown cause, including 'chronic fatigue syndrome' (ME/CFS).
The Foundation has lost no time in getting under way, with a highly informative and educational website launched last week (www.enterovirusfoundation.org). The site is “dedicated to accelerating communication across the research and medical communities,” and intends to be the “go-to” resource for professionals and patients seeking the latest EV research news and documents.
The EV Foundation website explains:
• What is known about enteroviral infections - their symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment - and what is not known. For example:
“Enteroviruses are small, very contagious viruses made of ribonucleic acid (RNA) and protein. The most well known are polioviruses - the cause of paralytic poliomyelitis, commonly known as polio. While paralytic poliomyelitis is targeted for global eradication through vaccination, the nonpolio enteroviruses continue to be responsible for a wide spectrum of diseases.”...
“The unsettling fact about enteroviruses is that they can spread to various organs and persist in the body for years - potentially causing disease long after the initial infection.” Though researchers have not yet discovered why, and there is so far no approved treatment for eradicating them.
• The many conditions known to have some association with enteroviral infection, such as ME/CFS, various cardiac conditions, diabetes type 1, ADHD, Guillain-Barre Syndrome, pancreatitis, and hepatitis, to name just a few.
• Projects slated for 2009. These will address, through pilot grants and other support:
- Work to determine the role of EV in disease
- Studies to find antivral compounds for effective treatment
- Development of diagnostic capabilities for “hard to detect” EV infections
- Acceleration of communication across the research & medical communities
- Public awareness-raising and education
• Qualifications of the EV Foundation's highly respected Board of Directors. Members include, for example, Dr. John Chia, MD, and Andrew Chia - best known for their groundbreaking article
“Chronic Fatigue Syndrome is associated with chronic enterovirus infection of the stomach” - and Drs. Steven Tracy & Nora Chapman at
the U of Nebraska EV Research Lab, who demonstrated that enterovirus in heart and other tissues leads to persistent infections, and are studying the effects on cell function.
• Many links to EV research centers and resources (www.enterovirusfoundation.org/news.shtml)