Significant South Australian CFS research

Dr Michael Musker of SAHMRI

“WORLD-first research in Adelaide that involves taking the blood samples of donors every seven minutes aims to unlock the mystery of a debilitating illness that has no cure or treatment.

Thousands of samples taken for the study are now being stored in a freezer to allow each one to be sructinised during a painstaking process, expected to take about a year.

Senior research fellow Michael Musker said the work being done at the South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute (SAHMRI) to try and understand Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) had “world-wide significance”.

Dr Musker says because the cause of CFS — or Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME) — isn’t known, there isn’t a cure or any officially approved medical treatments.

“If we can establish what it is and how it affects the body, we may be able to find a solution,” he said.

“The work we’re now doing hasn’t been done anywhere else and involves taking blood samples from 30 people with CFS (as well as 15 who don’t) every seven minutes, over an eight-hour period to look for inflammatory markers, and hopefully find some answers.

“We believe that we can make a major contribution to a participant’s quality of life by finding the biological basis of their clinical symptoms … (then) we may be able to target treatments.”

SAHMRI = South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute

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