Natural born killers

Posted on 4 Dec 2019

Despite their dramatic name, natural killer (NK) cells are actually a very important part of our immune system and help protect us from viruses by killing cells that have been infected. They can also target tumour cells. There is evidence to suggest that the cytotoxicity of NK cells (that is, their ability to destroy other cells) is compromised in some people with ME/CFS, which would have an impact on how well these individuals can fight off...

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New video series

Posted on 14 Nov 2019

With an award from the Wellcome Public Engagement Fund, Natalie Boulton is in the process of creating a series of videos covering different aspects of ME/CFS from a variety of perspectives. These videos will be available to watch on our website as well as a number of other places, and the first two are up now: “Understanding Graded Exercise Therapy for ME/CFS”. Watch them here

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Altered cardiac autonomic regulation

Posted on 12 Nov 2019

Published in the journal, Medicine, last month was a systematic review looking at “evidence of altered cardiac autonomic regulation in ME/CFS”. Simply put, “cardiac autonomic regulation” refers to the body’s control system that acts unconsciously to regulate the functions of the heart such as heart rate. This has been a recurring topic in projects funded by ME Research UK, and several of the studies referenced in this new review are from...

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ME/CFS Biomedical Partnership to apply for funding

Posted on 9 Nov 2019

A newly established group – called the ME/CFS Biomedical Partnership – has announced that it will apply for research funding from the Medical Research Council (MRC) and the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR). Lead investigators for the Partnership are human genetics specialist Professor Chris Ponting from the University of Edinburgh and clinician Dr Luis Nacul who leads the CureME team at the UK ME/CFS Biobank. In summary: The...

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Intra-brainstem connectivity in ME/CFS

Posted on 7 Nov 2019

Earlier this year, Dr Elisha Josef and colleagues at Murdoch Children’s Research Institute in Melbourne, Australia published results from their ME Research UK-funded study looking at brain functional connectivity, cognitive symptoms and fatigue in adolescents with ME/CFS. Also interested in this area of research is another Australian group, from a bit further up the coast in Queensland, which has recently published a paper investigating...

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POTS may be an autoimmune disorder

Posted on 17 Oct 2019

Many people with ME/CFS experience “orthostatic” symptoms when they stand up – including dizziness, altered vision, nausea and fatigue – which are caused by dysfunction of the autonomic nervous system. In fact, an ME Research UK-funded study at Newcastle University in 2013 found that 13% of patients have a condition called postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS), which is characterised by large changes in heart rate on standing,...

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