From Opinion in ‘Trends in Microbiology’, 5 October 2011.
Xenotropic murine leukaemia virus-related virus (XMRV) does not cause chronic fatigue
Mark J. Robinson, Otto Erlwein, Myra O. McClure
Section of Infectious Diseases, Jefferiss Research Trust Laboratories, Imperial College London, St Mary’s Campus, London, W2 1PG, UK
The xenotropic murine leukaemia virus-related virus (XMRV), a gammaretrovirus, was discovered in prostate cancer tumours by Virochip technology in 2006. It was subsequently detected in chronic fatigue patients in 2009. The association between XMRV and chronic fatigue has proved to be controversial. No study has confirmed these findings and many have refuted them. Here, we present the evidence for our contention that XMRV is not a human pathogen.