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Abstract: Diagnostic evaluation of 2′, 5′-oligoadenylate synthetase activities and antibodies against Epstein-Barr virus and Coxiella burnetii in patients with chronic fatigue syndrome in Japan

Microbes Infect. 2003 Oct;5(12):1096-1102.  Ikuta K, Yamada T, Shimomura T, Kuratsune H, Kawahara R, Ikawa S, Ohnishi E, Sokawa Y, Fukushi H, Hirai K, Watanabe Y, Kurata T, Kitani T, Sairenji T.  Division of Biosignaling, Department of Biomedical Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, School of Life Science, Tottori University, Yonago 683-8503, Japan

To investigate the association of viral infections with chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), we assayed 2', 5'-oligoadenylate synthetase (2-5AS) activities in peripheral blood mononuclear cells from CFS patients in Japan. These patients were diagnosed in two hospitals, H1 and H2, located in different areas of the country. The activities were detected in 19 (86%) and 7 (32%) of each of the 22 patients in H1 and H2, respectively, while they were detected in only four (11%) out of the 38 healthy controls. IFN-alpha was similarly detected in a few CFS patients and healthy controls.

We also assayed the antibody titers against Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) and Coxiella burnetii in these patients. The EBV anti-EA-IgG antibodies were detected in two (9%) and seven (32%) of each of the 22 patients in H1 and H2, respectively. Anti-C. burnetii IgG antibodies were detected in six (27%) out of 22 patients in H1 but not in 22 patients in H2, while they were detected in one (11%) of the nine healthy controls. Some CFS patients may be associated with EBV or C. burnetii infection.

There were some statistical correlations between the 2-5AS activities and antibody titers of EA-IgG (P < 0.05, Student's t-test) but not to the antibody titers of C. burnetii. The up-regulation of 2-5AS activities suggests immunological dysfunctions with some virus infections in the CFS patients. Our results indicate that 2-5AS activities are useful for a diagnostic marker of CFS and for exploring the complicated pathogenesis of CFS.

PMID: 14554250 [PubMed – as supplied by publisher]