Story by Tony Britton
The BBC Look East news programme last night highlighted plans by the research charity, Invest in ME, to promote the campus of the University of East England at Norwich as a centre of excellence for biomedical research into ME/CFS.
The programme featured hopes for a breakthrough treatment using a frequently used cancer drug, rituximab, which is being trialled in Norway. The presenter said it was hoped to stage a crowd-funded clinical trial of the drug at the Norfolk and Norwich Hospital by the end of 2018 – using patients recruited through the local ME/CFS service.
Professor Øystein Fluge, from Haukeland University Hospital in Bergen, Norway, who was interviewed while visiting Norwich, leads on the rituximab research. He was one of two scientist interviewed, together with Professor Simon Carding from the Institute of Food Research at Norwich who has a deep interest in the impact of the microbiome on ME/CFS.
Also appearing in the five-minute programme were two people with the illness – Rosalind Amor (25), who has had ME since the age of eight, and Charlotte Scase, who has been affected for the last 10 years.
Jan Hansen recorded the item on YouTube and BBC Look East kicked off their show last night with the story.