cfids funds new cutting edge research

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by simpsons, Aug 18, 2009.

  1. simpsons

    simpsons Member

    National CFIDS
    Foundation Funds New
    Cutting-Edge Research


    The National CFIDS Foundation (NCF) of Needham,
    MA has funded additional cutting-edge CFIDS
    research to add to its list of current grants totalling
    $346,160 for 2009.

    A team, from the University of Hawaii at Manoa, is
    the latest recipient of a research award from the

    The $91,160 grant is aimed at screening patient
    samples for a cyanobacterial toxin known as BMAA as
    well as to study the effects of various toxins on
    mitochondria and other cells.

    The principal investigator is Harry Davis, Ph.D.,
    Professor of biochemistry at the John A. Burns School
    of Medicine whose expertise is in the area of
    mitochondrial metabolism.

    The co-investigators include Yoshitsugi Hokama,
    Ph.D., Professor Emeritus of pathology and
    toxicology, and Ken Yabusaki, Ph.D., biochemistry

    They will be assisted by Cara Empey-Campora, Ph.D.,
    cellular and molecular biologist.

    The title of this grant is:

    "Chronic Fatigue Syndrome: Screening for
    Beta-N-methylamino-L-alanine (BMAA) in CFS
    Serum Samples and the Effects of Toxins, Lipid
    Substances, and Antibodies to Phospholipids on
    Mitochondria and Neuroblastoma Cells."

    In addition, the University of Hawaii group has
    teamed up with Paul Cox, Ph.D., Director of the
    Institute for Ethnomedicine in Jackson Hole, WY and
    Sandra Banack, Ph.D., also with the Institute for

    Both Cox and Banack are considered to be leading
    experts in cyanobacteria and BMAA.

    According to the National CFIDS Foundation's
    President, Gail Kansky, "This work is of critical
    importance to our research efforts regarding CFIDS.

    Since our previous research had established a link
    between ciguatera poisoning and CFIDS, it seemed
    only logical to pursue an investigation into
    cyanobacteria since there exists a scientific link
    between this type of bacteria and ciguatera.

    BMAA is one of several toxins that are produced by
    cyanobacteria. Futhermore, since cyanobacteria have
    been found in the ocean, lakes and ponds, the
    fallout could be enormous."

    Alan Cocchetto, Medical Director for the NCF stated:

    "Cyanobacteria are suspected in the development
    of a neurological disease called Amyotrophic
    Lateral Sclerosis/Parkinsonism-Dementia Complex
    which has symptoms of ALS, Parkinson's or
    Alzheimer's Disease.

    Since cyanobacteria are considered to be
    photosynthesizing bacteria, this is particularly
    intriguing since our research has yielded certain
    markers that do indicate the possible involvement
    of toxic photosynthesizing bacteria in CFIDS.

    By looking for BMAA in patient blood samples while
    pursuing the identification of other toxins and by
    examining their effects on mitochondria, the
    energy production power plants in the human
    body, we will be able to answer key questions that
    we believe pertain directly to not only the disease
    process but could provide important clues
    regarding the etiology of CFIDS."

    Several months ago, the NCF awarded research
    grants to Tsvee Lapidot, Ph.D., Professor of
    immunology at the Weizmann Institute of Science in
    Israel and to Hany El-Shemy, Ph.D., Professor of
    biochemistry at Cairo University in Egypt. These
    recipients received $ 255,000.

    Founded in 1997, the goals of the Foundation are to
    help fund medical research to find a cause, expedite
    treatments and eventually a cure for this devastating

    The Foundation is funded solely by individual
    contributions and has no paid employees.

    Additional information can be found on our website
    at: - and in The Forum quarterly
  2. AuntTammie

    AuntTammie New Member

    this is interesting - thanks for posting
  3. skeptik2

    skeptik2 Member

    I agree with following the leads wherever they may lead...this is really interesting.

    So, if this bacteria is found in our oceans, lakes and rivers, anybody, anywhere could get CFIDS/ME from that?

    Am I overstating, or misinterpreting?

    Can you look up BMAA cyanobacteria for me? I'm terrible at 'searches', and know you are an expert!

    Good to hear from you, and I hope this is GOOD news!

    Hugs galore,