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Closer to a Full Understanding of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

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Press Release: Griffith University, June 9, 2016. A new finding in the cause of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) has been identified by researchers at Griffith University who say they are getting much closer to a complete understanding of this disabling condition.This is the news from a team at the National Centre for Neuroimmunology and Emerging Diseases at the Menzies Health Institute Queensland, where a research team has identified significant impairments in the cellular function of people with CFS.

CFS – sometimes known as ME (myalgic encephalomyelitis) – is a complex illness characterised by impaired memory and concentration, metabolic, cardiac, gut and immune dysfunction and debilitating muscle pain and fatigue on exertion (also known as neuroimmune exhaustion).

Published in Biological Research, the study reveals a receptor not previously identified on particular immune cells.

“TRPM3 receptors have been identified on these particular immune cells, not only in healthy people for the first time, but also have been shown to be significantly reduced in CFS/ME patients,” says Professor Sonya Marshall-Gradisnik who is leading the study.

“These receptors are important as they move calcium inside the cell.  Interestingly in this study we also reported a significant reduction of calcium inside these cells from CFS/ME patients.

“The discovery means that we now have a potentially key contributing factor in the cause of this condition. This discovery also fits with our previous research showing that changes in genes and cell function are involved in vital cell signalling pathways found in all cell types.”

“These findings contribute to our knowledge of the clinical presentation of this condition and provide a sound basis for further research,” says Professor Don Staines. “We are now much closer to having a complete understanding of CFS.”

In another recent publication Clinical Therapeutics, NCNED researchers have shown that few therapeutic interventions are currently effective in CFS/ME.

“This is a very complex illness and it is likely that no single intervention will counter all effects of the pathology. We need to have concentrated efforts on further research to discover appropriate treatments which are effective,” Professor Staines says.

In the coming weeks these novel research findings are being presented by NCNED researchers at international clinical and research conferences in London and the Federation of America Societies For Experiential Biology (FASEB), Lisbon.

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8 thoughts on “Closer to a Full Understanding of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome”

  1. Ly45nn says:

    Would something help our bodies utilize calcium or would taking more calcium help?

    Thanks, Cruzgirl

  2. Sandy10m says:

    Calcium supplementation must be done carefully. You should always take Calcium with food. You should always take it with Vitamin D3. In addition, it is critical that you take Magnesium (which we are all short of anyway) at a different time than the Calcium. Here is a summary of why:

    “If a person takes high amounts of calcium without magnesium, they may very well be accelerating the occlusion of arteries in their heart and brain.” William Falcon

    The plaques in hardened arteries are made of calcium. It’s hard to say whether taking a simple calcium supplement will cause damage, but it’s not worth the risk.

    Choosing your calcium supplement wisely is equally important. Calcium Carbonate is completely WORTHLESS as a calcium source. I use Calcium Citrate with great results. There are other forms of Calcium out there that are more expensive, but I am not sure whether they are better for the money.

    We are all Vitamin D3 deficient as well. The new RDA is proposed to be 800 IU minimum per day to stay healthy. If you are sick like we are, then much more is needed, something like 2000 IU twice a day, if you can tolerate it. I am taking 1800 IU once per day for over 2 years, but I have problems with migraines with too much Vitamin D3.

    Also, watch the source of the Vitamin D3. There are 2 possibilities: sheep’s wool and fish oil. Some people are sensitive to one or the other. If you take 400 IU and have symptoms, try again a few days later. If the symptoms return, switch to the other source and repeat the experiment. I cannot take the sheep’s wool source but tolerate the fish oil source fine.

    I hope this helps. Good luck everyone.

  3. dee56e says:

    This is very interesting because when I was having all of the numerous tests run before my diagnosis of CFS, I was told my calcium levels were low. If you look at the symptoms of low calcium, many of them coincide with the symptoms of CFS.

  4. dee56e says:

    By the way, if supplementing with calcium you need to consider vit k2 and vit A also. Vit k2 helps put the calcium where it is needed and vit A offsets any side effects from extra vit D3.

  5. SeaVitality says:

    While the first person’s question is reasonable, I agree: it would have been greatly helpful if the researchers had referenced whether they thought the calcium deficiency in certain immune cells was due to in-born mutation or cellular malfunction…and via their best guess, whether supplementation (beyond dietary sources; i.e. yogurt, cottage cheese, greens) of this mineral might have potential merit.

    Personally, I tend to doubt the latter. Especially with postmenopausal women, and in spite of mainstream’s erroneous advice for increased bone density, it is NOT a good idea to use high or low dose Calcium supplements at this age “if” one is not ALSO supplementing with adequate doses (ratio balanced) of Magnesium, D3 and Vitamin K2 (MK-7). In particular, and with its key (synergistic) partner in D3, it is Vitamin K2 that provides constant surveillance of the blood stream to remove ‘excess’ calcium (contributes to plaque build-up, increased blood viscosity) and more properly place it in the realm of bone development.

    By now, I say it is inherently harmful for anyone to prescribe 1200 mg Calcium with (mere RDA of) 400 IU D3 for (supposed) “bone health”…which is what happened to a dear 91 y/o Aunt who already had full-blown Osteoporosis (i.e. Dowager’s Hump). After all, with so much calcium and too little D3 (depending on geography (north of equator) and darkness of skin, most need D3 at 5000-10000 IU/day to reach optimum blood levels between 50-80) and NO mention, let alone inclusion of Mg or K2, this ill-advisement was causing her more pain and fracturing…and after I sent these missing components with instruction on how to use, it wasn’t long before she had improved on both fronts.

    While I like to call these nutrients ‘The FOUR pillars of bone health’ credible research has confirmed how…while Calcium and Magnesium provide their respective support, but to lesser degree, it is more about the crucially necessary and metabolic interaction between the two vitamins of D3 and K2 that promote our best reality of bone strength and density.

    Needless to say, it will be interesting to see where this latest on cellular Calcium deficiency leads. After making it to the other side after my own years-long challenge with “neuroimmune exhaustion” (CFS/Fibro, Menopause onset) it was only after learning to use the antioxidant CoQ10 (200 mg/day) to target or better support the Mitochondria that I was finally able to turn a significantly ‘energized’ corner or spend more hours vertically upright, rather than horizontal. And although I can assure I am not of a closed or less than curious mind, this source of supplemented and fairly rapid improvement is why I am now having trouble in thinking that a genetically-induced Calcium deficiency of certain immune cells may have been involved. Hmm, I’ll be back…

  6. chdeevey says:

    I have suffered 16 years with CFS/FM. If there is ever a need of trial subjects, I am 100% willing to be one. I live in Ontario, Canada. Good luck, and thank you. This is very exciting news.
    Cathy Deevey

  7. Paula-Penny says:

    For those on, interested in, or who study the guaifenesin protocol for FMS/CFS developed by Dr. St. Amand, I want to point out that I BELIEVE he has been saying this all along and I wish there was a way for him to communicate to these researchers. All along he has said that those of us with FMS/CFS are so stiff because the calcium is outside the cells, not getting in them sufficiently: calcium outside the cells causes rigor mortis too. And no, no amount of eating or supplementing with calcium fixes the problem and it doesn’t show up as low calcium in blood/lab tests, because the problem is systemic. He somehow relates it to phosphorus also. It gets so detailed and technical, I cannot possibly explain it, but he has found it to be genetic as it runs in families. He sees CFS and FMS as same disease, different manifestation as guai works on both. yes, I wish he could talk to these researchers, see if they can pool together their researcg findings, observations, theories etc.

  8. Ccheryl says:

    Researcher in England determined there were several different types of CFS. I believe he said four different types. Each type had a different cause and therefore would respond differently to different treatments. He had to discontinue his research due to lack of funding. Maybe you could try to look up his research. I don’t know his name – wish I did. I think this makes total sense as there is such a difference in symptoms of different people – in fact, that is what is causing so much confusion. Your testing would turn up only one type of CFS and disregard the other types. In fact, we need a test to determine which type of CFS a person has. Cheryl

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