We are pleased to share a copy of Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak’s proclamation declaring May as ME/CFS Awareness Month. We are deeply grateful to our state leaders and our Governor for their outstanding commitment to those who are impacted by complex neuroimmune diseases.
WPI has continued to invest its resources into two key areas of concern: accelerating treatment discovery and enhancing relevant education for physicians. To address these critical issues, WPI has created a medical support program in Reno and developed educational materials that are delivered through traditional and online methods.
WPI’s medical program provides space, equipment, and salary support for Dr. Kenny De Meirleir, WPI’s Medical Director. Dr. De Meirleir is an independent practicing physician who is internationally recognized as an ME/CFS expert. He is expanding his impact within Nevada and around the world through his clinical research studies conducted in collaboration with University of Nevada research scientists. Collaborations such as these are critical to the successful discovery of mechanisms of disease and/or biomarkers.
Biomarkers are not only vital to understanding disease processes, they are also key to identifying specific diseases for the purpose of treatment. Dr. De Meirleir’s most recent publication, Evaluation of Four Clinical Laboratory Parameters for the Diagnosis of Myalgic Encephalomyelitis, moves this important goal forward by identifying clinical tests that can aid in the diagnosis and treatment of ME/CFS.
Continuing education of medical doctors and patients in the diagnosis and treatment of neuroimmune diseases is another urgent need in this community. To address the significant lack of medical education overseas, Dr. De Meirleir created several European medical seminars based upon his extensive experience and knowledge. WPI has entered into discussions with the Bateman Horne Center of Utah about future collaborations in an effort to expand similar educational programs within the United States. We hope that by working together we can create greater progress for the benefit of the entire neuroimmune disease community.
We invite you to watch for exciting news updates as WPI moves forward!
I’m excited to share with you some of the Institute’s latest news! With the support of our donors and the State of Nevada, we continue to make critical progress in the diagnosis and treatment of ME/CFS, a complex and disabling disease process.
The Institute participated in a recently published retrospective study identifying specific biomarkers from hundreds of patient tests that were conducted as part of Dr. De Meirleir’s medical evaluations. These four blood tests, which were found to separate ME/CFS patients from controls with a high degree of specificity and sensitivity, are already available to the medical community.
“These findings emphasize the organic nature of this disease,” stated Dr. De Meirleir, study coauthor and Institute Medical Director.
Myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME) is a complex and debilitating disease that often initially presents with flu-like symptoms, accompanied by incapacitating fatigue. Currently, there are no objective biomarkers or laboratory tests that can be used to unequivocally diagnosis ME; therefore, a diagnosis is made when a patient meets a series of a costly and subjective inclusion and exclusion criteria. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the utility of four clinical parameters in diagnosing ME. The research team utilized logistic regression and classification and regression tree analysis to conduct a retrospective investigation of four clinical laboratory markers in 140 ME cases and 140 healthy controls. They found that certain parameters may help physicians in their diagnosis of ME and may additionally shed light on the pathophysiology of this disease.
“Evaluation of four clinical laboratory parameters for the diagnosis of myalgic encephalomyelitis” can be found online in the Journal of Translational Medicine at https://translational-medicine.biomedcentral.com/a…
Congratulations to Dr. Vincent Lombardi, for being chosen as one of the 2018 Ramsey Award recipients.
Read more at Solve ME\CFS Initiative
We are pleased to announce that Nevada Center for Biomedical Research (“NVCBR”) has achieved a critical milestone. The Nevada System of Higher Education Board of Regents approved a new contract resulting in the integration of NVCBR’s basic research program and its associated research assets into the University of Nevada, Reno School of Medicine’s expert research community. This major move will provide greater visibility for ME/CFS research as it becomes an integral part of the University’s research efforts.
All other key activities including patient outreach, community education, and advocacy will continue through our organization. We will remain in our current office area on the University of Nevada, Reno School of Medicine campus within the medical office building of the Center for Molecular Medicine (“CMM”). We will continue to provide grant support in the form of equipment and office space at this location so that private medical practices can continue to serve patients impacted by ME/CFS and similar diseases.
Given that our organization will no longer be responsible for the basic research program, we have chosen to return to our original name, Whittemore Peterson Institute, a name honoring an impacted family member and the doctor who diagnosed and treated her for many years. Watch for more announcements about a special project coming to the institute.
During the month of August, NVCBR held its annual community fundraiser, Cheers! We hosted approximately 150 guests at The Grove at South Creek. We are deeply grateful for the generosity of our many community members who made cash donations and/or provided us with amazing auction items and for the help of Jon Klacking of Double Bond Wines and Tony King of Southern Glazers who donated most of the tasty wines. A delicious dinner was prepared by the expert chefs at The Grove as guests learned more about the work of the institute. Several reporters at Reno’s local news stations interviewed Annette Whittemore about the institute and the important role that medical research plays in uncovering the causes of ME/CFS. Kristin Remington of KRNV News 4 created a short but very insightful story that aired on the evening news and again at the Cheers event. Click here for the story.
Up-to-date education about diseases like ME/CFS, post treatment Lyme, and fibromyalgia is vital to creating a realistic understanding of the impact that infection associated, immune-mediated diseases can have on one’s life. Education will also help others learn about the ways in which the institute is trying find the answers for these patients. To address the goals of educating our community members and medical students we have planned two open houses to be held on November 1, 2018. The first event, geared towards patients and interested medical students, will feature Dr. De Meirleir and Dr. Lombardi from noon to 1:00. They will provide short reviews on their current medical and research progress. The second event will be held at the institute as a way to further educate our community business owners about the work of the institute and its mission to support the neuroimmune community.