senior member
Concord, NH


Dear president and Minister of Health

I write these lines to inform you of what is arguably the most important medical discovery in a decade. On 8 October, the journal Science published an article linking a retrovirus called XMRV with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS). Earlier this retrovirus also been linked to prostate cancer.

Scientists at the Whittemore Peterson Institute (WPI) in Reno, Nevada, the Cleveland Clinic and the National Cancer Institute of USA, detected XMRV retrovirus DNA in blood cells from 68 of 101 patients (67%) of Syndrome Chronic Fatigue, compared with 8 of the 218 healthy controls (3.7%). In this first study, they sought the DNA only in the cell nucleus, but in subsequent tests, looking also into the plasma, the percentage rose to 98% in people with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, with no change in healthy controls . This proved that the XMRV is present in most of CFS patients.

The fact that this retrovirus is present in almost all affected CFS suggests that its role is very important and decisive. Next studies will have to determine (among other things) whether the XMRV is causing immune derangement that causes CFS or takes advantage of a derangement in the immune system to attack. Scientists are working to have more precise control of the retrovirus and get a simple test can show whether you have the XMRV actively or not, something they think will come out soon.

THE XMRV is a retrovirus. This means it has the ability to hide their genetic code by integrating it into the cells it infects. A feature of this retrovirus that has drawn attention to the scientists, is that XMRV found in CFS patients are genetically identical, even when they come from distant geographical areas. This suggests that virus is a fairly recent (in biological terms), primitive and undeveloped, and hope their replication capacity is relatively low. Each time a retrovirus reproduces, remakes its genome, and therefore the possibility of small changes or genetic disorders are very common. The fact that these viruses are so similar, is in itself strange.

The XMRV IS A Gammaretrovirus related to leukemia in rats and was first identified in humans in 2007 by Dr. Robert Silverman, Department of Cancer Biology at the Cleveland Clinic, USA, working on prostate cancer tissue.

The XMRV would be the third pathogen retrovirus found in humans. Only two other known retroviruses in humans: the T cell leukemia and HIV. Retroviruses are associated with immune deficiencies, inflammatory diseases, neurological diseases and cancer.

This virus is also present in a lot of neuroimmune diseases, including autism and fibromyalgia. CHRONIC FATIGUE SYNDROME (CFS), (misnamed chronic fatigue) is a debilitating disease of unknown etiology. Is estimated to affect 17 million people around the world (including developed countries). It is classified by the World Health Organization with the number G93.3 in ICD-10.

It is an organic disease, and multisystem disease. Progressively affects the immune system, neurological, cardiovascular and endocrine systems, and is characterized by severe fatigue cause, substantial loss of concentration and memory, spatial disorientation, restless sleep, intolerance to light, sound and temperature changes, intolerance to emotional stress and physical activity, muscle and joint pain, chemical sensitivities and a sense of permanent flu state, among other symptoms. In addition there have been severe disruptions in the function of NK cells in blood pressure and orthostatic balance, a significant reduction of blood flow to the brain and a reduction in oxygen consumption capacity of the cells. At the same time, the external appearance does not reflect the patient's illness: his appearance is normal.

Despite the recognition of CFS as an organic disease by the experts and even by the World Health Organization and studies showing, immunodeficiency between NK cells and lymphocyte subsets, Th1/Th2 ratio, physicians not expert in the disease, (which are the vast majority) have classified as a mental illness, non-existent.

People with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome have been diverted to mental health patients from considering liars, fakers and tramps, to depression. This has meant for patients who for years without correct diagnosis are, see how their physical and intellectual capacities are dwindling and no one will explain them, even that is happening. This medical attitude has influenced the social, administrative and patient's family that has led to a forced social isolation and family.

Now find a retrovirus that may explain the symptoms of a disease as complex as Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and that, whether direct cause as if it is indirect, latent leaves the health of CFS patients is very poor: immune deficiency, neurological, endocrine ... The study has had an impact worldwide: USA, Japan, United Kingdom, Belgium, Cuba, .. make appropriate inquiries to take necessary measures.

Meanwhile international level 75 of the top scientists have met in Cleveland to determine the pathogenic mechanism of retroviral transmission and explore treatments and vaccines.

It would be desirable that the Ministry of Health shall report correctly and start a protocol of care to patients potentially carrying the retrovirus (especially in those with CFS). It is unacceptable that the excessive size is giving the influenza A virus, in contrast to the denial in practice of XMRV, the new retrovirus associated with prostate cancer and neuroimmune diseases like CFS, Fibromialgya and Autism.

Keep in mind that based on this preliminary study, 3.7% of the population are carriers of potentially pathogenic retroviruses. We still do not known its transmission routes, therefore posing a threat for blood supply.

It is the responsibility of the Government and the Ministry of Health to coordinate informational and prevention campaigns, in order to prevent the contamination of the blood supply with XMRV. It is also the responsibility of the Ministry of Health to inform the medical community of the link between this retrovirus XMRV and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and Prostate Cancer.

Social Security should cover for XMRV blood test in all the patients that are already ill, and a screening test should be available to preserve safety of blood supply if studies confirm that this is the case.

It would not be acceptable after this finding that some doctors ignorant physician prescribing further cognitive behavioral therapy or antidepressants in CFS patients, as this will only increase mitochondrial damage and reduces the defenses of an immune system already depressed by a retrovirus.

I hope so take into account this information and take necessary measures to avoid criticisms of society in general and voters in particular in terms of time management to take actions.


The Undersigned