Uncovering the Mystery of ME/CFS: A Groundbreaking Study Sheds Light on the Diseases Origins – Press Stories

Title: NIH Study Reveals Hope for Treatment of ME/CFS Following Bacterial Infection

Jennifer Caldwell, a participant in a National Institutes of Health (NIH) study on Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CFS), shares her story of how a weekend swimming trip in 2014 led to a bacterial infection and the onset of this debilitating condition. ME/CFS affects over 4 million U.S. adults, with no approved treatments currently available.

The NIH study, recently published in Nature Communications, highlights distinct differences in the bodies of individuals with ME/CFS, showing that it is a biological illness with variations in brain function and the immune system. Despite the challenges faced during the study due to disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, scientists remain hopeful that their findings will lead to the development of treatments for ME/CFS in the future.

The research focuses on post-infectious ME/CFS, which can develop after bacterial or viral infections, emphasizing similarities in clinical and biological features with long COVID. Brain scans and tests have revealed low activity in the temporal-parietal junction and immune system differences in ME/CFS patients. Potential treatments such as immune checkpoint inhibitors are being considered to address the overworked immune systems of those living with ME/CFS.

Ongoing long-COVID treatment trials may also provide valuable insights for ME/CFS treatments, offering a ray of hope for patients like Caldwell who face significant challenges on a daily basis. Researchers are optimistic that the study will pave the way for new treatments and ultimately improve the quality of life for individuals living with ME/CFS.

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