Y'all might want to listen to Bateman's and Klimas' recent presentations. They both said vertical transmission through genes. But they are basing this on the mouse version of the virus. Supposedly, XMRV is a genetically mutated version of the mouse version. I would not think that was enough to say XMRV is passed through egg and sperm. But maybe they know more than what they said in their speeches. Bateman is talking in a webinar on the 18th. Maybe she will address it more specifically then.
My family history:
Sister 2: CFS, diagnosed in 1970s. She is two years younger than me. She rejected the CFS diagnosis after a couple of years and embraced a depression diagnosis. And now she thinks she has dysautonomia. She is convinced that whatever it is she has, she has had since birth. Has fibroid cysts in her ovaries and has had angry bladder since she was a teenager. Ended up having a fallen bladder. She is only 41 and never had any children (by choice).
Sister 3: Has bi-polar disorder, narcolepsy and endometriosis. Also had a Bells palsy a few years ago. She is only 36. (Also did not have any children, by choice)
Mother: had breast cancer when she was 49. Very aggressive but it has not returned in over ten years. Had gall bladder problems, etc. She is highly intelligent but very absent minded. This is the neurological symptoms I am talking about. She put some oil in a pan on the stove and went out to the mailbox one day and the kitchen caught fire. Things like this are common for her.
Dad: Has high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes. These all came on him in his 50s. (I don't think he has XMRV, or if he does, I don't think he has symptoms from it.)
Grandmother on my mom's side: Is having fatigue, and vertigo problems and they can't find what the cause is. She had stints put in her heart last year. She struggles from depression. I think she has XMRV. She is about 70. Oh, and she had breast cancer when she was in mid 60s, just a few years ago. No sign of return.
Grandfather: An alcoholic who all in the family think he had bi-polar. He was a lot like my mom. Highly intelligent but very absent minded.
Aunt: Has Hepatitis B. ( I don't see any signs of XMRV, but that doesn't mean she doesn't have it. My grandmother didn't show any signs until just a few years ago.)
Cousin 1: (descendant of above grandmother) Has depression and in the last couple of years has outbursts of uncontrollable anger. (This is very unlike her.) She was put on sabbatical a year ago to get herself straightened out. She came back. Then this last summer, it happened again and she was fired. She was an X-ray technician.
Cousin 2: (also descendant of above grandmother) depression. She is in her young 20s. Had to quit college despite a scholarship because of the depression.
Cousins 3 and 4: (also descendants of above grandmother) No signs of abnormality yet. (Notice I said "yet." In my family, it is only a matter of time. LOL)
And by the way, I don't know if this has any bearing, but my grandmother has seven granddaughters and no grandsons. All my cousins who are her descendants are female. It is strange, I know. I can't help but to wonder if there is some biological reason for that. So I have two sisters and four cousins on that side and they are all women. Of course, I also thought it was that the sperms that get in are the X sperms because they are strong willed. All the women in my family have very strong personalities.
I do plan to get tested when it is paid for by insurance. As I said, I am operating now on the assumption I have XMRV. But, my sister (number 2, the one I am closest to in age, the one with CFS) does not believe she has CFS any more and does not believe she has XMRV. But I believe this is because she got so frustrated with the whole Epstein Barr fiasco of hope, then dashed, that she doesn't want to go there. In fact, she as much said that to me last month. I asked her if I get tested for XMRV and am positive, then would she get tested. She at first said, "What good would it do. There is no treatment. I don't think I have it because what I have has been with me since birth." She said that she didn't want to go get tests for something if it isn't going to change her treatment. She said she went through that with Epstein Barr and all that information and research she did then did not do anything to help her condition. So what's the point. She said, "I don't want to go down that road again." I explained that XMRV can be with you since birth. And I said that we have so many in our family with similar symptoms and we are carrying different diagnosis. I said if we do have XMRV, then at least it will keep some in our family from being given the wrong treatment.
My sister agreed there would be some benefit for others in the family. (It helped that I participated in a depression research study at her request about a decade ago. So she agreed that when test is paid for by insurance, she will get it.)
If my sister has it, then I will encourage my other sister and my mother to get tested. And if they are positive, then we need to get my grandmother and cousins tested.
Another note, some comments here seem to be saying that it is more easily passed to females than to males. But let's remember, this is a virus that goes dormant. It has to be "turned on," Dr. Mikovitz said. And, androgens, particularly progesterone is one of the hormones that turns it on. So this would explain why more women get CFS than men. And it explains why women are more likely to get CFs in their late teens or during their late 30s and 40s.
But it could be just as many men are carrying XMRV. But if they don't have the trigger that turns on the virus, then they won't get sick.