Article: XMRV and CFS_ A Simpler Explanation by Bob


We had a problem with the comments working but its fixed now (I think). Thanks Bob for clearing up some of the fog on this issue.
Camas left this comment yesterday

Thanks so much, Bob! This has helped me to finally understand all of this science that's been way over my head.
This is great especially for those who are unable to keep up with every new discovery as this thing unfolds. Very helpful. Thanks so much. If it's possible, it would be wonderful if this could be kept up to date, in particular in light of the things that are expected to be revealed at the conference next week when more information is made public. It would be nice to have a tab or suchlike on the home page (or other appropriate place like maybe the buzz page?) to click on that brings one right to this simplified and hopefully updated overview. Just a thought. Really good work! :victory:
Thank you, Bob. Good technical writing. Besides your clear explanations, I appreciate the short paragraphs.

I then read your earlier, more in-depth article. I feel smarter!

My formal education in the biological sciences is inadequate for what I need to know as this research unfolds. Two high school biology courses and three or four in college - and one of those was called "Sex and Drugs." (A lot of good sex and drugs are going to do me now.)

Lots of researchers study MLVs, they are very commonly used as models for cancer development and for other purposes. So I don't suppose the odds are really that long.
Thank you Bob. I can't make it through the scientific journal explanations without loosing focus. This helped a lot.
Different Viruses? One Virus? Or Both?

Nice one Bob.

Indications from Alter are that all these viruses might be referred to as variants of a single disease associated virus,
Without wishing to appear all religious like (I'm not) it sounds a bit like a 4-part version of the Trinity to me. :D
It's just a case of wording, and possibly an unfortunate case of using an 'X' in the naming of XMRV.
Indeed - pinning it down to "X" in the paper looks like a very unfortunate move in retrospect - if there had been no great distinction to be made between WPI's X and Alter's P's, it would have changed the whole perception considerably - and maybe the '4 viruses?' thread would have turned out differently...
Thanks, Bob. Yes I clearly heard Dr. Lo say the following in the Q & A period after the presentation: (in your words from above but the exact ideas)

"Are Alter's viruses and Mikovits' viruses different variants of the same virus, or are they totally different viruses? Obviously there are differences, but the similarities seem to be more significant than the differences.

Alter says that these differences are exactly what he expects to see in a retrovirus, so these observed virus mutations support the type of human retrovirus infection that Mikovits' XMRV research indicated.

Alter says that the Hep C and HIV viruses exhibit the same pattern of variants as this new type of human retrovirus that Alter and Mikovits have found in ME/CFS patients.

Indications from Alter are that all these viruses might be referred to as variants of a single disease associated virus, just the same as the multiple Hep C virus variants are often referred to as the Hep C virus (singular)."

Yet, because this came after the paper's presentation and was underplayed, both the media and we as a group took off with the idea of there being different viruses, and that therefore this could not have been a valid replication in its findings. This was an expensive error in judgment, in my opinion. Let's focus on the different testing methods and above all, the different patient cohorts, to begin with, to find explanations for the different results among papers.
Thanks for the kind feedback everyone... it's really appreciated... :Retro smile:
Thank you Bob, This is the best interpretation of scientific journal explanation.
I can spend a whole day just gazing at the screen and be no wiser.