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Amit Kaushal—Gene expression findings in CFS/ME

The approach by the Davis Lab was to look at phenotypes and gene expression. 200 patients and 400 healthy controls were assessed. MFI (20 scale) was used with 20 questions. This showed that the phenotypes of the patients were different from the controls. There was much variability in the CFS group—fatigue was far greater than in the controls. Looking at gene expression, whole blood was used looking at RNA activation, microarray overview etc. 47,000 genes can be measured simultaneously in patients versus controls. False positives are possible.

When looking at the sickest patients versus the healthiest of the controls there were more significant genes. There were a large number of genes showing significant different expression between patients and controls. Diseases with systemic inflammation were more highly correlated.

Limitations in the studies are whether there is significance of blood markers. But if there is a signal, the signal should be chased. He concluded that CFS/ME is a heterogeneous disease phenotypically, and there is genomic evidence for a chronic inflammatory state. The inflammation is associated with core intracellular components.