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Dr. Lipkin’s message to the ME/CFS community regarding the XMRV/MLV study

Virologist Ian Lipkin, MD, [1] heads Columbia University’s Center for Infection and Immunity. And currently he is directing a project involving 11 investigators who will conduct state-of-the-art analysis to search for evidence of viruses in blood samples from a well-characterized, geographically distributed US cohort of ME/CFS patients – what he calls “the XMRV/MLV CFS/ME study.”

In light of recent confusion & questions centering around the retracted XMRV/MLV articles and reasons for pursuing the project, Dr. Lipkin has posted a message to “Colleagues and Friends in the CFS/ME Community.” (Thanks to MECFSforums.com for this news.) To read his concise, reassuring message, go to http://cii.columbia.edu/blog.htm?cid=CalAzy [2]

In particular, Dr. Lipkin states:

• He feels it is important to involve the original XMRV/MLV investigators in the project and is grateful they found a way to include Dr. Judy Mikovits.

• They are well on the way to obtaining samples from the target 150 patients & 150 controls,

• And they expect to report their findings “in early 2012.”

Importantly, he adds: “…Be assured that more than 85% of the funding associated with this initiative is invested in patient recruitment and characterization and sample collection, archiving, and distribution. Thus, irrespective of study outcome there will be unprecedented opportunity to explore hypotheses other than that disease is due to XMRV or MLV infection.”