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Members of the gammaretroviruses—such as murine leukemia viruses (MLVs), most notably XMRV [xenotropic murine leukemia virus (X-MLV)–related virus—have been reported to be present in the blood of patients with chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS). We evaluated blood samples from 61 patients with CFS from a single clinical practice, 43 of whom had previously been identified as XMRV-positive. Our analysis included polymerase chain reaction and reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction procedures for detection of viral nucleic acids and assays for detection of infectious virus and virus-specific antibodies. We found no evidence of XMRV or other MLVs in these blood samples. In addition, we found that these gammaretroviruses were strongly (X-MLV) or partially (XMRV) susceptible to inactivation by sera from CFS patients and healthy controls, which suggested that establishment of a successful MLV infection in humans would be unlikely. Consistent with previous reports, we detected MLV sequences in commercial laboratory reagents. Our results indicate that previous evidence linking XMRV and MLVs to CFS is likely attributable to laboratory contamination.