News of the WeekCHRONIC FATIGUE SYNDROME

New XMRV Paper Looks Good, Skeptics Admit—Yet Doubts Linger

Science  27 Aug 2010:
Vol. 329, Issue 5995, pp. 1000
DOI: 10.1126/science.329.5995.1000

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Summary

This week, a long-awaited paper by U.S. government labs about the link between a virus and chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) finally saw the light of day. The study confirms a controversial 2009 paper that reported CFS patients are often infected with the virus, called XMRV. Since then, four other studies have failed to duplicate those findings. Even skeptics are impressed by how much care the authors of the new study took to ensure accuracy. But that makes it even more baffling why some labs easily detect the virus while others can't find a trace of it in any patient.