UK ME/CFS Research Collaborative conference and Lipkin seminar | our first impressions | 3 September 2014

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CATCH UP FROM OUR MEDICAL ADVISER DR CHARLES SHEPHERD

I am only just back from London where Ian Lipkin (pictured left) gave an excellent presentation to a patient meeting at Allen and Overy this morning.

Ian then went off to speak to the press at the Science Media Centre: www.sciencemediacentre.org/expert-encounter-prof-ian-lipkin-columbia-university/

This is the current list of those attending the press briefing: Associated Press, Bloomberg TV, Daily Mail, New Scientist, Radio 4 Today, Reuters.

The journalists will, of course, have wanted to talk to Ian about a range of medical topics that he is involved with in addition to ME/CFS So please watch out for reports from now on…

Ian then flew back to New York this afternoon So thanks to everyone who helped us to pay for Ian’s trip to London – it was money very well spent!

The first UKRC Bristol conference was outstanding – and this is the feedback that we are also receiving from both our overseas speakers (Ian, Robert Dantzer, Andrew Lloyd) and a considerable number of researchers who attended or participated in the meeting.

It was great to see Prof Jonathan Edwards there as well and I understand that he has been reporting on some of the content already.

The patient meeting was also full on Monday afternoon and resulted in some lively and thoughtful discussion on the challenges facing ME/CFS research.

As for content, I can assure the internet sceptics that this was a very biomedical conference looking at infection, immunology, neurology, neuroinflammation and microglia (which had lots of mentions!), muscle and mitochondrial pathology, genetics, neuroimaging (and how they all link up), pain, sleep, and all the new technologies (genomics, proteomics) that we need to make use of.

The abnormal illness beliefs and behaviour model wasn’t even mentioned…

Professor Stephen Holgate made it clear in his closing remarks that we are dealing with a serious MULTISYSTEM DISEASE and that we must now go out and bring in new researchers to follow up the all leads and exciting new findings that were discussed over the past two days.

I will be preparing a detailed and thoughtful report over the next week or so for the MEA website.

And am happy to answer questions in the meantime but this will have to wait – it has been a very hectic six days starting with my daughter’s wedding last weekend, then Bristol and London, and I’m just home today in time for our wedding anniversary!

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