Article Index


Though research findings pertaining to muscle function/ disturbances, including those of the heart, were not discussed in any great detail. A summary of these findings is included for your information:

  • An oxidative stress study measuring protein carbonyls suggested higher levels of protein oxidation in CFS subjects as opposed to controls 1.
  • Exercise testing in 189 CFS subjects resulted in clinically significant subgroups with 50% of subjects showing moderate to severe functional impairment. An unexpected blunting of Heart Rate and Blood Pressure responses was noted. 2
  • Sarcoplasmic reticulum defect: conduction and calcium transport abnormalities. 3
  • Cardiac muscle—cardiac output found related to illness severity and the predicted exercise-induced relapse 4.
  • Subset of CFS patients with IgM-EBV or CMV-Antibody found to be at risk for cardiac motility abnormalities and occasionally true cardiomyopathy 5.
  • Raises the issue of incomplete viral replication activating immune responses as suggested by Glaser et al 6.

[Again, for a moment we depart from Klimas’ lecture. Our review of Glaser’s paper sheds somewhat more light on Klimas’ note on his research. Glaser’s team for a number of years has studied the workings of EBV and its effects in a variety of illnesses. In CFS, Glaser found strong indications that constituent components or expressions of the latent virus may by themselves account for immune dysregulation and symptoms in subgroups of CFS patients. The same process may occur for other viruses, including CMV and HHV-6.]

1. Smirnova IV, “Elevated Levels of Protein Carbonyls in Sera of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome patients,” Mol Cell Biochem Jun 248(1-2) (2003): 93-5.

2. Vanness JM et al, "Subclassifying Chronic Fatigue Syndrome through Exercise Testing." Med Sci Sports Exerc. Jun 35(6) (2003): 908-913.

3. Fulle S et al, “Modification of the Functional Capacity of Sarcoplasmic Reticulum Membranes in Patients Suffering from Chronic Fatigue Syndrome,” Neuromuscular Disorders 13 (2003): 479–484.

4. Peckerman A et al, "Abnormal Impedance Cardiography Predicts Symptom Severity in Chronic Fatigue Syndrome," Am J Med Sci. Aug 326(2) (2003): 55-60.

5. Lerner AM et al, "Prevalence of Abnormal Cardiac Wall motion in the Cardiomyopathy Associated with Incomplete Multiplication of Epstein-Barr Virus and/or Cytomegalovirus in Patients with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome," In Vivo 18( 4) (2004): 417-424.

6. Glaser R et al, “Stress-associated Changes in the Steady-state Expression of Latent Epstein–Barr virus: Implications for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and Cancer,” Brain Behavior and Immunity 19 (2) (2005): 91-103.