I prepared this statement for Ashley Haugen to read yesterday at the Western Massachusetts Department of Public Health screening of Unrest. This is new information from the Severely ill Patient Study (SIPS) that I also presented in London:
“We have made considerable progress in analyzing the data from the severely ill patient study. This has taken some time because we have only had one bioinformatic scientist analyzing the massive amount of data.
We have found that there are a considerable number of mutations that are more common in ME / CFS patients than in healthy controls. This would suggest that these mutations make a patient more susceptible to having ME / CFS. It could also indicate that some of the mutations are responsible for the severity of the patients we studied. We also see a large number of metabolomic changes that have been previously seen in less severe patients. These metabolomic differences between healthy controls and our severely ill patients are often much bigger than in studies with less severe patients. A more detailed analysis of this data may aid us in developing treatments.
One area we are currently studying using the genetic and metabolomic data is the possibility there may be one or more metabolic traps. This is a metabolic state that a patient can develop, possibly caused by physical stress such as infection. Once a patient is in this state they cannot easily get out by rest.
We are conducting system biology and pathway analysis that shows that a metabolic trap is possible, and that some of the observed mutations make it more likely. If this is the case we should be able to push the patients out of this state by a specific metabolic intervention. We are very hopeful that this could be a one time treatment, take only a few days, and be relatively inexpensive.”
Sending greetings from London,
Ronald W. Davis, PhD
Director, OMF ME / CFS Scientific Advisory Board
Director, Stanford Genome Technology Center