The following was posted Dec 7 in ProHealth’s ME/CFS Message board, and appears on a number of ME/CFS blogs. At this writing we have not seen an official statement/source that would verify this statement. The post is attributed to Dr. Timothy Luckett, and the cited source is The CFIDS Research Blogspot.
“CDC Damage Control: ME/CFS Research Group Relieved of Duties
In a stunning move, responsibility for XMRV research has been taken away from the ME/CFS working group within the CDC, and re-assigned to the division of HIV/AIDS prevention. This group will be in charge of replicating findings of the Whittemore-Peterson Institute, rather than the group under the control of Dr. Reeves. The move is highly significant: it appears that the CDC is now acknowledging the serious nature of XMRV.
The CDC will be part of an interagency working group on XMRV, led by Dr. Jerry Holmberg. A three-part study will be initiated:
1. The first part will consist of standardizing and validating laboratory methods and reagents for XMRV testing. This stage will use samples provided by samples collected by Dr. Judy Mikovitz. The intention is to create an FDA approved test.
2. The second part will test a much larger sample than the initial study, trying to determine the prevalence of XMRV in the general population, and the blood supply.
3. The third part will consist of how XMRV is transmitted, how it causes disease, and how it affects various subgroups of the population.
The forceful demotion of Dr. Reeves is a sign that the CDC is in damage control mode. The HIV/AIDS prevention group in the CDC has many capable retrovirologists, who can provide years of expertise. In my opinion, this turn of events should lead to balanced, common sense research.”
POST SCRIPT: On December 12, Khaley Castle posted a commentary on her new CFS Un-Tied Blog, refuting this interpretation. As she points out, “The sole reason for the XMRV study being removed from the Reeves shop [is that retroviral studies are conducted in a different center]. It’s organizational protocol.” In fact, she writes, “I think it is a somewhat dangerous time in the ongoing political quagmire of CFS.” To read more, see her post, “XMRV and the CDC,” at www.CFSuntied.com/blog1