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Advances in Virology
Volume 2011, Article ID 854540, 5 pages
Research Article

Failure to Detect XMRV-Specific Antibodies in the Plasma of CFS Patients Using Highly Sensitive Chemiluminescence Immunoassays

1Pathology Department, Tufts University School of Medicine, 150 Harrison Avenue, Boston, MA 02111, USA
2Pharmacology Program, Tufts University School of Medicine, 150 Harrison Avenue, Boston, MA 02111, USA
3Infectious Diseases R&D, Abbott Diagnostics, 100 Abbott Park Road, Abbott Park, IL 60064, USA
4Private Practice, 115 East 72nd Street, New York, NY 10021, USA

Received 8 April 2011; Accepted 10 June 2011

Academic Editor: Myra McClure

Copyright © 2011 Brendan Oakes et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


In 2009, Lombardi et al. reported their startling finding that the gammaretrovirus xenotropic murine leukemia virus-related retrovirus (XMRV) is present in 67% of blood samples of patients suffering from chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), as opposed to only 3.7% of samples from healthy individuals. However, we and others could not confirm these results, using a nested PCR assay. An alternative to this highly sensitive, but contamination-prone, technique is to measure the serological response to XMRV. Thus, we tested the plasma samples from our cohorts of CFS patients and healthy controls for the presence of XMRV-specific antibodies. Using two novel chemiluminescence immunoassays (CMIAs), we show that none of our samples have any XMRV-reactive antibodies. Taken together with our previous findings, we conclude that XMRV is not present in any human individual tested by us, regardless of CFS or healthy control.