The breakthrough, published today in the medical journal PLOS one, can provide answers to CFS-patients concerning what causes the mysterious disease and how it can be treated.
“We definitely see an effect. There is hope,” states professor and head of oncology at Haukeland University Hospital, Olav Mella to the TV 2 News.
TV 2 has exclusive access to the research paper that came out in the medical journal PLOS one. Mella and his colleague, attending MD Øystein Fluge, have completed a double-blind study on 30 Norwegian CFS-patients.
The results are sensational. Two out of three of the patients experienced major improvement, while some experienced a full recovery.
New status to CFS-patients
I addition to providing hope to millions of CFS-patients concerning treatment, the MDs are giving the patients, as a group, new status.
The two doctors say the results indicate that CFS is in fact a somatic decease.
"We think that CFS is an autoimmune decease. The immune system has a central role in this," they say to TV 2 News.
Attracts international attention
The discovery has already attracted international attention. However, the news wasn´t released to the public until today, after the medical journal finally lifted the embargo.
Mella and Fluge presented their results as early as in May at a CFS-conference in London. At the conference, reporting restrictions were imposed upon the audience. Following the conference, the doctors have been contacted by several foreign doctors and researchers who attended the London-meeting.
Cancer-drug against CFS
The two Norwegians are the first two doctors in the world to have found that the cancer-drug Rituximab has very good effects upon CFS.
Each year the disease, which has an unknown etiology, ruins the lives of millions of people worldwide. In Norway alone it is estimated that 15.000 people have CFS.
A fortunate conjuncture
Professor Mella and attending MD Fluge have basically stumbled over what could become one of the biggest breakthroughs in the field of CFS.
A patient with Hodgkin’s lymphoma also had the diagnosis CFS. To fight the cancer, the patient was given amongst other treatments, the antibody Rituximab. After a few weeks the patient’s condition regarding CFS-symptoms suddenly improved.
“Completely surprisingly, to both us and the patient, the CFS-symptoms were gone after six to eight weeks after the treatment,” says Fluge.