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Glucocorticoid receptor DNA methylation and childhood trauma in chronic fatigue syndrome patients.


J Psychosom Res. 2018 Jan;104:55-60. doi: 10.1016/j.jpsychores.2017.11.011. Epub 2017 Nov 20.
Glucocorticoid receptor DNA methylation and childhood trauma in chronic fatigue syndrome patients.
Vangeel EB1, Kempke S2, Bakusic J3, Godderis L4, Luyten P5, Van Heddegem L6, Compernolle V6, Persoons P7, Lambrechts D8, Izzi B9, Freson K10, Claes S11.
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Although the precise mechanisms are not yet understood, previous studies have suggested that chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) is associated with hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis dysregulation and trauma in early childhood. Consistent with findings suggesting that early life stress-induced DNA methylation changes may underlie dysregulation of the HPA axis, we previously found evidence for the involvement of glucocorticoid receptor (GR) gene (NR3C1) methylation in whole blood of CFS patients.

In the current study, we assessed NR3C1-1F region DNA methylation status in peripheral blood from a new and independent sample of 80 female CFS patients and 91 female controls. In CFS patients, history of childhood trauma subtypes was evaluated using the Childhood Trauma Questionnaire short form (CTQ-SF).

Although absolute methylation differences were small, the present study confirms our previous findings of NR3C1-1F DNA hypomethylation at several CpG sites in CFS patients as compared to controls. Following multiple testing correction, only CpG_8 remained significant (DNA methylation difference: 1.3% versus 1.5%, p<0.001). In addition, we found associations between DNA methylation and severity of fatigue as well as with childhood emotional abuse in CFS patients, although these findings were not significant after correction for multiple testing.

In conclusion, we replicated findings of NR3C1-1F DNA hypomethylation in CFS patients versus controls. Our results support the hypothesis of HPA axis dysregulation and enhanced GR sensitivity in CFS.

Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Childhood trauma; Chronic fatigue syndrome; DNA methylation; Glucocorticoid receptor; HPA axis; NR3C1




mum to ME daughter
The stress/ glucocorticoid receptor theory was proposed by Dr Bansal - liME conference in Sweden around 2014 ( note stress not trauma). It fits a large number of adolescents - stress can be physical / emotional and is by no means " trauma".
Anything that resets immune response to tH2 could be a predisposing factor.
Twist a theory to fit new buzzwords