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The Fight is on...Imperial College XMRV Study

Discussion in 'XMRV Research and Replication Studies' started by George, Jan 5, 2010.

  1. fresh_eyes

    fresh_eyes happy to be here

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    The more I think about it, all cohort questions aside, this has to be a methodology issue - not one person tests positive. It almost seems like they're taking a stand against the existence of XMRV itself, or at least its presence in any population.

    It seems like they're doubling down on the lab contamination theory. Which I might buy if the Science paper was just one lab, but contamination in 3 labs??
     
  2. Cort

    Cort Phoenix Rising Founder

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    I agree but also consider the problems with the German replication studies of XMRV. There's something strange about XMRV itself. Interesting that several US studies can find it but no studies outside of the US have found it - AT ALL!

    Several US studies from different labs have found it- could they all be contaminated? You wouldn't think so.

    I don't know if VIPDx did the testing or if it was done at NCI but I can't imagine that VIPDx - a small lab - has many laboratory mice running around. They're a commercial lab - not a research lab.
     
  3. _Kim_

    _Kim_ Guest

    Found in the section: PCR detection of XMRV and MLV sequences.

     
  4. JayS

    JayS

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  5. fresh_eyes

    fresh_eyes happy to be here

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    Hey George, could you maybe add a link to the paper to your first post? I keep losing it. Thx. :Retro smile: FE
     
  6. _Kim_

    _Kim_ Guest

    Hey hvs!!!

    Looks like the CAA heard you. At least their timing was right on. I'm heading back over to read the rest of SV's comments.

    XMRV Negative Results Emphasize Need for Robust Replication Study by Suzanne D. Vernon, PhD

    (Thanks JayS for posting this - we're all very interested in how the CAA will handle the replication studies)
     
  7. George

    George Guest

    Done! It's on the first page and is credited (big grins)
     
  8. fresh_eyes

    fresh_eyes happy to be here

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    Hey, do I hear fightin' words from Suzanne V?

    ps Good dog, George! (pat, pat, pat)
     
  9. Cort

    Cort Phoenix Rising Founder

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    CFIDS Association says the study 'is not a valid attempt to replicate the WPI study.

    http://www.cfids.org/cfidslink/2010/010603.asp

    Why?

     
  10. Alice Band

    Alice Band PWME - ME by Ramsay

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    The reference to a 9am cortisol test in the patient cohort is interesting. It's not normal in the UK for doctors to run a test like this.

    Is it possible that Wessley supplied the same blood samples for XMRV testing that he had already used for his earlier paper on cortisol?

    The reason that this may be signifigent/interesting is that he finds high cortisol in his patients (when others find low)
     
  11. Cort

    Cort Phoenix Rising Founder

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    Thats one reason they have Suzanne Vernon - so they can comment competently on stuff like this. :cool:

    I suddenly feel much more relaxed :)
     
  12. CJB

    CJB Senior Member

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    Thanks, Jay - that answered all my questions for the moment. Feel much better.:D
     
  13. Dr. Yes

    Dr. Yes Shame on You

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    George and I keep barking up the same trees. :Retro wink:

    I think cohort selection is extremely significant in this (and all) studies, and still find this statement puzzling:

    "All patients had undergone medical screening to exclude detectable organic illness, including a minimum of physical examination, urinalysis, full blood count, urea and electrolytes, thyroid function tests, liver function tests, 9 a.m. cortisol and ESR."

    That is a very unclear statement, even if we were to look at this without knowledge of the criteria controversies in CFS. Excluding "detectable organic illness" sounds like the old Wessely, and not just a poorly-worded sentence. At the very least, it is a mistake, as it should read "to exclude other organic illness considered exclusionary by the Fukuda criteria", etc.. I really want to emphasize that this is BAD scientific paper writing, folks; they're usually much more careful in the methodology section than this, as nothing embarasses (real) scientists more. Very rare to see those kind of mistakes unless they are NOT mistakes, but actually DO describe the real selection criteria they used.

    Note that they only list some of the tests they ran (along with not making clear if these alone, or complete differential diagnoses, were necessary for exclusion from the study).
    If XMRV is more difficult to detect in less severely ill patients, as the WPI surmised, and the more severely ill ones also had numerous laboratory or physical abnormalities (what about having HHV6 or EBV positive titers, for instance? Or just lymphocytosis?), then it may be that using their protocols and at this stage in the game it is difficult to detect XMRV in all but those with other positive physical findings. So if that group was excluded, then it's understandable that no XMRV positives would be found.

    So we really DO need to find out what exclusionary criteria were used for this study (whether we can ever get an honest answer is another question...).

    As for the lack of corroboration in European studies.. there have been only two. One was of CFS patients selected by Wessely, a lousy scientist who favors lousy selection criteria. The other focused on prostate XMRV and was not a CFS study of any kind, to my understanding. So, so far I don't see any valid contradiction of the WPI study until I hear more about the criteria, etc. used by this new study.

    ETA: I guess it would be more accurate to say that George keeps barking up the same trees I'm swinging from... Gibbons don't bark...
     
  14. Koan

    Koan Be the change.

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    Well done, S Vernon! :Sign Good Job:
     
  15. Esther12

    Esther12 Senior Member

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    I'm really confused by this. Surely he can't be excluding patients with abnormal cortisol levels from his definition of CFS... but I don't know why he'd mention cortisol levels otherwise. I've not been reading any of his recent papers, so have no idea about his own beliefs as to how CFS and cortisol could be related.
     
  16. _Kim_

    _Kim_ Guest

    Good point KFG!! I'm glad to see a new member or two decide to chime in on this discussion.

    Welcome to the Forums:D
     
  17. rebecca1995

    rebecca1995 Apple, anyone?

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    Wow, the CAA went to bat for us! That's encouraging and hopefully a sign of things to come.

    Can't wait to see what Dr. Mikovits has to say about the Wessely paper at her presentation 1/22.
     
  18. fresh_eyes

    fresh_eyes happy to be here

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    @ Dr Yes: You're absolutely right about the cohort. AND if the methodology was the same, they'd be finding a higher indidence even in a random sample, unless, as they imply, it's all about lab contamination.

    The more I look at it, with the help of all you fine science minds, the more I think they've overplayed their hand here.

    Is THAT what that racket is?
     
  19. George

    George Guest

    Beautiful CAA reply

    Great catch JayS and you Kim for reiterating it.:Sign Good one:
     
  20. _Kim_

    _Kim_ Guest

    I can't help but think that SV's quick response was due, in part or in whole, to the brilliant suggestions that hvs made in The Big Talk Part II.
     

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