Solve M.E. & UCLA ME/CFS Brain Stimulation Study Begins

[Excerpted with permission from “Novel Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CFS) Brain Stimulation Study Begins” by Cort Johnson published on healthrising.org.]

The Iris Cantor Center at UCLA didn’t know much about ME/CFS but when they learned (from Sadie Whittaker, chief scientific officer at Solve M.E.) about the high female predominance, the little funding and the high prevalence, they invited Solve M.E. to apply for the Center’s Annual Health Pilot Program. In this program, the Center solicits proposals for UCLA researchers to study a select number of diseases that disproportionately affect women.

Solve M.E. put together a toolkit about ME/ CFS and applied to be one of the featured diseases in the program. Their application was accepted—the Center notified UCLA researchers that it was looking for proposals to study ME/CFS—and the proposals rolled in.

Solve M.E. picked the winner. It turned out to be a rarity for this disease—a small clinical trial no less—to assess the effects of repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) in ME/CFS. Karl Zeile, a Solve M.E. board member, and Dian Zeile stepped up to support it.

I talked with Dr. Juliana Corlier, PhD and Dr. Andrew Leuchter, MD about their upcoming study. The procedure is remarkably easy on the patients: the participants are awake during the procedure and are able to drive themselves home afterwards. The 20-person trial will begin shortly and is open to women with ME/CFS.

Corlier and Leuchter reported, “We anticipate that rTMS treatment will significantly improve many of the symptoms of ME/CFS. Positive results from this study will provide proof-of-concept evidence for a novel rTMS treatment approach for ME/ CFS to be validated in a future double-blind, randomized control trial.”

That would be a nice step forward for a disease which has had all too few clinical trials.

Read the full post from healthrising.org here.

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