• 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.

No detectable XMRV in subjects with chronic fatigue syndrome from Quebec


Senior Member
Found this through Pubmed. Couldn't find the main article yet, it should be published in Virology.

No detectable XMRV in subjects with chronic fatigue syndrome from Quebec.
Cool M, Bouchard N, Mass G, Laganire B, Dumont A, Hanna Z, Phaneuf D, Morisset R, Jolicoeur P.
Laboratory of Molecular Biology, Clinical Research Institute of Montreal, 110 Pine Avenue West, Montreal, Quebec, Canada H2W 1R7.

We investigated the presence of XMRV in a cohort of Quebec patients with chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS). DNA was purified from activated peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) and PCR was used to detect XMRV gag and env in 72 patients. Anti-XMRV antibodies were searched in sera of 62 patients by Western blot analysis. Attempts to detect XMRV antigens was made, using immunofluorescence with Gag anti-p30 antiserum on activated PBMC from 50 patients. Plasma viremia was measured by RT-PCR on 9 subjects. Finally, detection of infectious virus in 113 CFS subjects was made by co-culture of PHA+IL-2 activated PBMC with human LNCaP carcinoma cells, and by infecting the same susceptible cells with plasma, using a reverse transcriptase (RT) assay as a readout in both experiments. No detection of XMRV footprints nor infectious virus was detected with any of the approaches, in any of the tested individuals.


Edit: full article can be found here, but is behind a paywall:


Senior Member
Here is a little back story on this research.

Jolicoeur is a preeminent retrovirologist in Quebec who fervently wanted to find a cause and cure for the illness that afflicts the ME/CFS community. He was very selective in patient recruitment in his research making sure they met the Canadian Consensus Criteria. What was so unfortunate in all this is the fact that Mikovits so blatantly broke an agreement with myself and other retrovirologists and refused to provide Jolicoeur with information that could have advanced his research on whether retroviruses were a factor with ME/CFS patients. Mikovits's total lack of corroboration with other scientists who are seeking a cure for this dreaded disease is shocking and uncalled for. Her credibility among retrovirologists within the scientific community is practically nil. She made promise after promise to Jolicoeur which delayed his research and she kept none of them. It makes you wonder what is really going on at the WPI.

I was hesitant about revealing this but certain information from other sites required me to post this information and I do have the emails.


Senior Member
I wonder what Jolicour did to provoke that alleged behaviour from Dr Mikovits? She been working very well with other doctors in Europe and communication has gone just fine with us here.

Would like to hear her side of the story first but she's not a member here or the sort of scientist who would smear this over a public forum using an assumed name.

According to the change of roles at the WPI months ago Dr Lombardi should be the one that Jolicoeur was collaberating with anyway. Dr Mikovits cannot clone herself (a pity) and be stretched across the world under the control of any scientist who demands her help.


Senior Member
Good question Daffodil. Ask Mikovits or Jolicoeur. Well don't ask Jolicoeur as he doesn't know either. I suspect given the BWG results, that the WPI could not validate their XMRV positive patients as being positive which were needed for his project. The bottom line is that an agreement was broken. I told Cort many months ago to prepare the forum for negative news on XMRV. He can verify it. The WPI promised positive news and reports in August. Where are these reports?

Some of the information that I post here is actually transported to the other forum to be denigrated. Many well know retrovirologists..no not Miller or me...have gone to the other forum under different pseudonyms in the same manner as those members do when they post elsewhere. They attempted to inject some impartiality, scientific education and reasoning or enlightenment to those members only to be debase and demonize to the point that they withdrew. What it accomplish is the fact that it validates Wessely corrupt theories on ME/CFS patients as being psychosomatic paranoid delusional. The scientific community especially among retovirologist is a tight knit community. The word gets out. Now they are known as the crazies. A stigma that the ME/CFS patient community can ill afford. The WPI castigated Peterson when he left the WPI. A man who spent decades helping the ME/CFS community.

We had and I am speaking of Miller and myself a great research project that would have selected patients under the highest standards possible far exceeding the CCC definition. We were looking for ME patients that exhibit certain symptoms associated with ME/CFS. I have to speak generally as some of this information is confidential. But we felt that we could find a cause and a possible cure for these ME patients. The research project was pulled because of the adverse and negative publicity we received. They had no idea what we were trying to do and still don't. The negative publicity was unwarranted both on myself, Miller and the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Institute.

These institutions are funded by both private and public community donations. The last thing they want is negative publicity directed at their institutions on controversial research projects.

The lack of impartiality affecting research by other retrovirologists is astounding. We are all part of some great government plot designed to undermine research into ME/CFS. Mikovits, herself, said the same thing. I am not part of any government conspiracy nor are any of the retrovirologists that I know. I find that insulting. And to debunk this heresy, retrovirologist want to find another retrovirus. It is not in their own interest to disprove or cover-up that their is a retrovirus out there. It's job security for them and a huge increase in their budget if they could discover a new retrovirus. So this dog don't hunt.

According to this other group, St. Mikovits can do no wrong and to my knowledge, there is not a scintilla of criticism directed at her or the WPI. If everyone wants to put all their eggs in one basket be my guess. If they want to put their trust in Dr. Kenny de Meirleir who is not a retrovirologist, or Hemispherx Biopharma good luck. I would check their background first though.

As a result, and this is a hint, a particular organization can forget about ever applying for funding for ME/CFS research projects from many of the large foundations of which I am a member and they are substantial.

I can tell you this, that there are a number of research projects in the pipeline which I will not discuss here for fear of the negativity they will receive because they are not part of the WPI.

Hint: Silvermann in Tahoe. Maybe trapping for mice perhaps :)

I will cease posting on here now for an interim period and will not respond to any more postings or comments.


Maybe they will get the irony that xmrv is dead or maybe not.

As Alan Dove posted on another blog
"You forgot the most Failblog-worthy observation in the whole paper: the WPI could not perform their much-ballyhooed cell culture assay on the blinded samples because ...

... wait for it ...

... their cell lines were contaminated with mycoplasma."

Posted by: Alan Dove | September 23, 2011 1:36 PM

The sequences that WPI posted to Genbank indicating variations are the same as xmrv and VP62 within a 2 or 3 base pair differences. There is no variation in sequence.


Senior Member
I think the problem has been that all the virologists have been calibrating their assays to the VP62 clone,(XMRV) which we now know to be a mistaken construct by Silverman, and not to exist.

This explains why noone could find it.

The WPI has found other HGRVs in patients that are not VP62 and uses assays that can detect these.

These sequences need to be sequenced (correctly this time) and the search for the retrovirus can continue. Once this is done I hope other labs will successfully find the retrovirus(es)

The serology (antibody evidence) is of course unaffected by all this and still hold good.

I dont see why Dr Mikovits reputation should suffer because of mistakes made by other labs.

Dr Mikovits has sincerely tried to advance the science and help us.

Whatever your feelings about patients, ecoclimber, I do not think Dr Mikovits deserves the insulting tone you have just used.
After all, she cannot be held responsible for the behaviour of other people.