The authors of a controversial 2009 paper that found a possible link between the retrovirus XMRV and chronic-fatigue syndrome partly retracted their findings Thursday, though some of them still believe there is a connection between a retrovirus and the disease.
This is a setback for people who hope for progress against chronic fatigue syndrome. We wrote about this several months ago, but as the Wall Street Journal reported this week, a 2009 study published in the journal Science that implicated a retrovirus, XMRV, in the mysterious disorder has been retracted. Despite the efforts of 9 other labs, the findings could not be replicated.
Possible silver lining: people with chronic fatigue may be able to resume donating blood. Because of fears that a retrovirus associated with this illness could enter the blood supply, patients had been asked to stay away from blood banks. The Red Cross may lift that restriction.