Metabolomics in Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

Now Published in PNAS – Metabolic features of chronic fatigue syndrome

In the absence of a clear cut diagnostic test, people with CFS are often ridiculed and treated as if they’re malingering – or if people are being kind about it, they’ll treat them as depressed.

Eric Gordon, MD
Metabolomic Deficiencies Characteristic of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

First Metabolomics Study
Metabolomics Research at SISOHOur first metabolomics study was a collaboration between Eric Gordon, MD of Gordon Medical Associates and SISOH, with Robert Naviaux, MD PhD of Naviaux Labs at UCSD. We performed targeted, broad-spectrum metabolomics to gain insights into the biology of CFS. We studied a total of 84 subjects using these methods. Forty-five subjects from the Gordon Medical practice (n = 22 men and 23 women) met diagnostic criteria for ME/CFS by Institute of Medicine, Canadian, and Fukuda criteria. Thirty-nine subjects (n = 18 men and 21 women) were age- and sex-matched normal controls.

We found that targeted, broad-spectrum metabolomics of plasma not only revealed a characteristic chemical signature but also revealed an unexpected underlying biology. Metabolomics showed that chronic fatigue syndrome is a highly concerted hypometabolic response to environmental stress that traces to mitochondria and was similar to the classically studied developmental state of dauer. This discovery opens a fresh path for the rational development of new therapeutics and identifies metabolomics as a powerful tool to identify the chemical differences that contribute to health and disease.

Read the complete study article, “Metabolic features of chronic fatigue syndrome“, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, published online August 29, 2016.

Read Metabolomics-Q&A-for-CFS-v6

More from Dr. Naviaux on metabolics and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome