XMRV: latest reports in ‘Science’, 23 September 2011

Science 23 September 2011:
Vol. 333 no. 6050 pp. 1694-1701
DOI: 10.1126/science.333.6050.1694



False Positive
Jon Cohen, Martin Enserink

For the past 2 years, a controversy has roiled around the purported link between a mouse retrovirus, XMRV, and chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), a baffling, debilitating disease with no known origin. An October 2009 paper in Science found XMRV in the blood of two-thirds of the CFS patients examined, but more than a dozen labs have failed to replicate it to date. Millions of dollars have gone into clarifying the question, which has had far-reaching consequences for people with CFS and, if the virus lurked in the blood supply, the public at large. A nine-lab study published online this week by Science found that none of the labs could reproducibly detect XMRV or relatives of the virus in blood samples distributed under a blinded code. Science is also running a partial retraction of the original paper, as a contributing lab found that it in fact had a contamination.

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In Science Magazine
Partial Retraction
Robert H. Silverman, Jaydip Das Gupta, Vincent C. Lombardi, Francis W. Ruscetti, Max A. Pfost, Kathryn S. Hagen, Daniel L. Peterson, Sandra K. Ruscetti, Rachel K. Bagni, Cari Petrow-Sadowski, Bert Gold, Michael Dean, and Judy A. Mikovits

Science 22 September 2011: 1212182 Published online 22 September 2011

Abstract Full Text (PDF) Supporting Online Material

Failure to Confirm XMRV/MLVs in the Blood of Patients with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome: A Multi-Laboratory Study

Graham Simmons, Simone A. Glynn, Anthony L. Komaroff, Judy A. Mikovits, Leslie H. Tobler, John Hackett, Jr., Ning Tang, William M. Switzer, Walid Heneine, Indira K. Hewlett, Jiangqin Zhao, Shyh-Ching Lo, Harvey J. Alter, Jeffrey M. Linnen, Kui Gao, John M. Coffin, Mary F. Kearney, Francis W. Ruscetti, Max A. Pfost, James Bethel, Steven Kleinman, Jerry A. Holmberg, Michael P. Busch, and for the Blood XMRV Scientific Research Working Group (SRWG)

Science 22 September 2011: 1213841Published online 22 September 2011

Abstract Full Text (PDF) Supporting Online Material

Transcription of Science’s Live Chat with Michael Busch and Jay Levy on MXMRV and CFS, 21 September 2011.


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