Here is the direct link to the Home page of the UK Medical Research Council's (MRC) National Institute of Medical Research.
The research group’s lead scientists are listed under the Research link.
There are about 50 of them including Dr Kate Bishop and Dr Jonathon Stoye – both retroviral experts it seems and who will be the UK representatives at the XMRV Conference.
“In 2006 a novel retrovirus called xenotropic MLV-related virus (XMRV) was isolated from patients with familial prostate cancer. Prostate cancer is the most prevalent cancer amongst men in the UK, and hereditary prostate cancer is thought to account for 9-15% of cases. More recently, XMRV has been identified in patients with chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS). At this time, it is not known whether these diseases are linked to infection by XMRV.”
They are 2 of the UK scientists who, along with Groom, Kerr and Gow and others, published one of the UK negative XMRV papers – although we now know that they do appear to have found MLV related-viruses in the CFS samples, as did Lo/Alter at the FDA/NIH, but did not realise the significance at the time. They all seem like good ‘guys’ to have on board.
Although the study was negative for XMRV, Dr Mikovits has since reported that she found some of Dr Bishop’s findings in the paper very helpful for clarifying some points about host factors in relation to the WPI’s research.
Kerr and Gow, 2 of the other authors, have been v much involved in biomedical ME research in the UK and Kerr in particular has had a close relationship with the WPI and other research currently funded with them in the US.
The indication is then, that the MRC may have funded an XMRV research paper – ie a major UK medical organisation has now actually funded biomedical research into ME/CFS – (regardless of whether it turned out to be a –ve paper) - a wonderful, newsworthy fact in its own right!
Dr Stoye and Dr Bishop are very well placed and look to be our best hope in forwarding serious, biomedical research into MLV related viruses in ME/CFS in the UK.