Drs Ian Lipkin and Mady Hornig from Columbia University, New York, have received $766,000 from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease (NIAID) for a large ME/CFS study that will collect a total of 3,000 microbiome (gut and throat) and blood samples from 125 patients and 125 matched controls.
The details were announced on Friday – when we also learned that the $220,000 raised by the Microbe Discovery Project in earlier (and continuing) public crowdfunding efforts would now be used to finance the analysis of collected samples collected.
We also discovered that despite the earlier rejection of the application by Dr Ron Davies for his team's ‘big data' study of severely affected ME/CFS patients; an anonymous donor has now provided $350,000 and helped the Open Medicine Foundation reach its $1,000,000 total for Phase 1 of this project.
Now that the study can proceed, it is understood that the initial data will better enable applications to be made to relevant National Institutes of Health departments in the future to hopefully assist in completing this bold five-year initiative.
Campaigners remain hopeful that current and future research efforts will receive a more positive reception by US funding authorities in light of the recent high-profile Institute of Medicine (IOM) and Pathways to Prevention (P2P) reports.
An official statement is expected in coming months but the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) appears to have indicated with the release of a Statement of Work that they are willing to progress at least some of the recommendations from the IOM report and publicly embrace the seriousness of this disease.