From the desk of Jonas Bergquist, MD, PhD
Uppsala University

New OMF funded paper

"Lessons From Heat Stroke for Understanding ME/CFS"

On behalf of Open Medicine Foundation, I’m pleased to share that a new research publication, authored by myself and colleagues, has been published in Frontiers in Neurology: “Lessons From Heat Stroke for Understanding Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.”

To better understand ME/CFS, we compared this disease to another inflammatory condition: heat shock. Although heat shock is an acute condition, it shares with ME/CFS many commonalities in physiological responses to various stressors. There are multiple novel therapeutics that are under development to treat heat shock. My colleagues and I suggest that future research is necessary to explore these similarities to potentially identify novel treatments for ME/CFS. 

As a result of this initial comparison, there were multiple similarities identified. First, heat stroke is an inflammatory response from an external stressor, which produces endogenous (coming from inside the body) toxins, and not the result of exogenous (external factor) pathogens. In heat stroke, a sequence and causality results from the physiological disturbances in body systems that create many features seen in ME/CFS. Lastly, these inflammatory responses can be perpetuated as a “vicious cycle” and in this case, relate to intestinal injury. Potentially, novel approaches to interrupt the vicious cycle could be important to developing new therapeutics for ME/CFS.

To learn more about our study, read the complete paper here.

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