• Welcome to Phoenix Rising!

    Created in 2008, Phoenix Rising is the largest and oldest forum dedicated to furthering the understanding of and finding treatments for complex chronic illnesses such as chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS), fibromyalgia (FM), long COVID, postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS), mast cell activation syndrome (MCAS), and allied diseases.

    To register, simply click the Register button at the top right.

Negative XMRV CFS study with Ila Singh's name on it (University of Utah)

Jemal

Senior Member
Messages
1,031
Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) is a multi-system disorder characterized by prolonged and severe fatigue that is not relieved by rest. Attempts to treat CFS have been largely ineffective primarily because the etiology of the disorder is unknown. Recently CFS has been associated with xenotropic murine leukemia virus-related virus (XMRV) as well as other murine leukemia virus (MLV)-related viruses, though not all studies have found these associations. We collected blood samples from 100 CFS patients and 200 self-reported healthy volunteers from the same geographical area. We analyzed these in a blinded manner using molecular, serological and viral replication assays. We also analyzed samples from patients in the original study that reported XMRV in CFS. We did not find XMRV or related MLVs, either as viral sequences or infectious virus, nor did we find antibodies to these viruses in any of the patient samples, including those from the original study. We show that at least some of the discrepancy with previous studies is due to the presence of trace amounts of mouse DNA in the Taq polymerase enzymes used in these previous studies. Our findings do not support an association between CFS and MLV-related viruses including XMRV and off-label use of antiretrovirals for the treatment of CFS does not seem justified at present.

http://jvi.asm.org/cgi/content/abstract/JVI.00693-11v1

This study was done by the university of Utah and has Ila Singh's name on it... which is rather worrisome (at least for people like me, who are strong XMRV believers). Is this the study from her we have been waiting for?
I hope the WPI will give a reaction to this.

Also see this article on the website of the University of Utah:
http://healthcare.utah.edu/publicaffairs/news/current/05411Singh.html

In her own study, Singh initially obtained false positives for XMRV in blood samples. But she determined those false readings were related to robotic equipment that previously had been used for extraction of DNA from XMRV-infected tissue culture cells. Several months later, this equipment led to new samples getting contaminated. When the robotic equipment was abandoned, no more false positives were detected in either CFS patients or healthy patients. Its easy to see how sample extraction and tissue culture processes might be vulnerable to contamination, Singh said.
 

Jemal

Senior Member
Messages
1,031
I don't have access to the entire article unfortunately...
Anyway, this is a bit of a downer for me.
 

Waverunner

Senior Member
Messages
1,079
I don't have access to the entire article unfortunately...
Anyway, this is a bit of a downer for me.

Not only for you but for many of us. For me it seems that the activity on the forum has declined a lot. I'm not sure but I think this also has to do with the fact that we have no progress at all right now.
 

Starlight

Senior Member
Messages
152
thanks for posting.This is a pretty big downer for me too.I am not sure whether I am in a state of utter blind faith or utter blind madness .I especially didnt like her reasons for the positive studies.I hope someone who knows a bit more than I do science wise will post on this soon.I think many were hoping for good news on this but the silence was a bit ominous.I am not sure where we go from here.
 

Jemal

Senior Member
Messages
1,031
Not only for you but for many of us. For me it seems that the activity on the forum has declined a lot. I'M not sure but I think this also has to do with the fact that we have no progress at all right now.

Indeed, not much progress has been made, so there's not too much to talk about. Too many negative studies. And this study has made the contamination theory a lot stronger or so it seems.

thanks for posting.This is a pretty big downer for me too.I am not sure whether I am in a state of utter blind faith or utter blind madness .I especially didnt like her reasons for the positive studies.I hope someone who knows a bit more than I do science wise will post on this soon.I think many were hoping for good news on this but the silence was a bit ominous.I am not sure where we go from here.

Yeah, I am also questioning myself now... maybe I am mad as well :D
And indeed, the silence didn't give me that much hope...
 

eric_s

Senior Member
Messages
1,925
Location
Switzerland/Spain (Valencia)
It's a heavy blow. But no matter how it turns out, we must make sure this can't happen again. We must move out of this situation where we depend on others so much and are helpless in regards to their actions. Time for us to stick together more than ever and for everybody to contribute. We are a large enough number to be able to determine our destiny ourselves.
 

alex3619

Senior Member
Messages
13,810
Location
Logan, Queensland, Australia
This Singh study does not appear to be published, at least is not showing on the publications page here or anywhere I can find:

http://www.path.utah.edu/labs/singh/pub.php

If it is unpublished and not public we should not be talking about it. No title or publication data was given. We cannot confirm if it is a correct report.

A negative finding by Singh may still does not seem right - we need details to evaluate this.

Contamination does not adequately explain prior findings, if there are indeed multiple strains including multiple strains in the same patient. It also does not explain why controls are so consistently negative (with a constant low positive rate of 4 to 7 percent), nor why mouse DNA has not been detected before. It could be correct of course, but we need details.

Until it is published or made public and we can look at it, we cannot say much at all, nor should we. It is certainly interesting though.

Bye
Alex
 

alex3619

Senior Member
Messages
13,810
Location
Logan, Queensland, Australia
Sorry for the misunderstanding, I have had to push my self twice in the last three days and now I can't sleep - I should have seen the link but the blue was invisible to me.

I am looking into this and may make a further comment.

Bye
Alex
PS This paper also includes Bateman and the Lights, I wonder if this is what the Lights were refering to at SOK when it was said that XMRV is proving hard to find in ME/CFS.
 

Jemal

Senior Member
Messages
1,031
Sorry for the misunderstanding, I have had to push my self twice in the last three days and now I can't sleep - I should have seen the link but the blue was invisible to me.

No problem Alex. A thread I made a few days ago was about unpublished research, so it does happen :D
 

Wonko

Senior Member
Messages
1,467
Location
The other side.
Assuming we trust Ila Singh, which I thought we did, then that looks pretty damn conclusive to me. At least in the write up it's implying a replication of the WPI's work with a negative result on all counts.

Still waiting for the BWG and Lipkins results but.............
 

jace

Off the fence
Messages
856
Location
England
Attached is a pdf of the full paper. There's a lot to analyse here, let's not jump to any conclusions. Time to get our thinking caps on.
 

Attachments

  • shin_et_al_2011.pdf
    966.9 KB · Views: 94

Wonko

Senior Member
Messages
1,467
Location
The other side.
Thanks for that.

There does appear to be some concern (in other places) about the assay used (amongst other things).

This comes under the category of trust IMO, if we trust that Ila Singh is a very good researcher and impartial (i.e not biased against us) then surely we trust the assay? and the paper's conclusions? or do we only trust papers that say XMRV is it?

Of couse there is the little issue of HOW contamination may have occured in the positive papers, also by very good researchers, but as a hypothesis XMRV isnt looking good ATM IMO.
 

Jemal

Senior Member
Messages
1,031
There's an article about this study on the University of Utah website:

http://healthcare.utah.edu/publicaffairs/news/current/05411Singh.html

It explains why this study is much more comprehensive than earlier negative studies.

In her own study, Singh initially obtained false positives for XMRV in blood samples. But she determined those false readings were related to robotic equipment that previously had been used for extraction of DNA from XMRV-infected tissue culture cells. Several months later, this equipment led to new samples getting contaminated. When the robotic equipment was abandoned, no more false positives were detected in either CFS patients or healthy patients. Its easy to see how sample extraction and tissue culture processes might be vulnerable to contamination, Singh said.
 

eric_s

Senior Member
Messages
1,925
Location
Switzerland/Spain (Valencia)
That's quite interesting, because it might explain why she did not abandon the project early on. I think she expanded it as some point and that was taken as a positive sign.

I wonder what she will now conclude regarding prostate cancer? Will she still see her study there as valid?

As far as i'm concerned it's not over until the groups that have found XMRV/MRVs say it's over or we have to conclude they're not honest or capable, but i give more weight to this study than to the other negative ones as well.
 

oceanblue

Guest
Messages
1,383
Location
UK
Quote on the Utah uni website:
Although she found no evidence for XMRV or any related virus in either her study samples or those tested at the Whittemore Peterson Institute, Singh says there is much data to encourage further research into whether other infectious agents are associated with CFS.

These research efforts must continue, she says. Chronic fatigue syndrome is a devastating disease for which a cure needs to be found.
 
Messages
13,774
XMRV's been looking less likely to work out for CFS for some time. This keeps us moving in that direction.

I felt like Cort's XMRV buzz page had hinted that the Singh study was looking negative... maybe that was just my imagination, but this doesn't now come as a big surprise.

I don't think that any of the negative XMRV virologists are trying to cover something up - and certainly not Singh. I think that McClure totally misunderstood Wessely's approach to CFS, and said some things in the media which people were justifiably irritated by, and led to them seeing her as untrustworthy. Towers has made exagerated claims in the media unsupported by his published work... but so has Mikovits. I don't think this sort of thing ever indicated that they would be willing to intentionally hide evidence of a retrovirus spreading through the human population, just like I don't think the WPI is intentionally misleading patients in order to make money out of them.

We've still got the BWG and Lipkin studies to go, but it's looking increasingly unlikely that XMRV is related to CFS.

I now only google 'xmrv' once a day! That shows I'm losing interest.
 
Messages
13,774
Dr Singh's study shows that her new assays are unable to detect HGRVs in known positives


http://networkedblogs.com/hsc3y

Surely the whole point is that it's not KNOWN that the WPI's positives are truly positive. If all assay's which find these 'positives' to be negative are seen as flawed, then it would become impossible to ever dispute the WPI's claims that they're finding CFS patients with an XMRV infection.