Investigations into the underlying cause of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome have advanced the field considerably in the past year.
n Gene microarray data have led to a better understanding of pathogenesis.
n Recent research has evaluated genetic signatures, described biologic subgroups, and suggested potential targeted treatments.
n Acute viral infection studies found that initial infection severity was the single best predictor of persistent fatigue.
n Genomic studies showed that persistent cases express Epstein Barr virus-specific genes and demonstrate abnormalities of mitochondrial function.
n Studies of immune dysfunction extended observations of natural killer cytotoxic cell dysfunction of the cytotoxic T cell through quantitative evaluation of intracellular perforins and granzymes.
n Other research has focused on a subgroup of patients with reactivated viral infection.
These advances should result in targeted therapies that impact immune function, hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis regulation, and persistent viral reactivation.
Source: Current Rheumatology Reports. 2007 Dec;9(6):482-7. PMID: 18177602, by Nancy G. Klimas, MD and AO Koneru, MD. University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, VA Medical Center, Miami, Florida, USA. [E-mail: email@example.com]