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Adelaide brain scan research – volunteers wanted for repeat study
Saturday 21 May 2011
Now that the results of an MRI brain scan study conducted by an Adelaide team of researchers has been published [see earlier news item: "CFS breakthrough by interdisciplinary Adelaide research group"], the researchers are calling for volunteers to participate in a repeat study to confirm the findings.
Researcher Dr. Richard Kwiatek says:
We would like to use the publication of this work as a reminder (i.e. to promote) that we are currently trying to confirm its findings with an independent repeat study.
This means we continue to recruit males and females with uncomplicated (no other illnesses) CFS between 18 and 50 years of age and healthy controls (male and female) of the same age range who are not biological relatives of CFS sufferers and who do not exercise regularly, ie they lead relatively sedentary lifestyles.
Any help with this recruitment process would be greatly appreciated.
Please note that our primary findings survived statistical adjustment for anxiety and depression scores of the validated Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale. We therefore suggest that our results represent the most convincing evidence now existing that the central nervous system is directly involved in CFS and that this occurs independent of psychological disorders.
Dr. Richard Kwiatek
If you would like to participate in the follow-up study, here are the details from the original advertisement which apply equally to the follow-up:
Dr Kwiatek stresses that the healthy volunteers should not be biologically related to CFS sufferers. Volunteers could be in-laws, friends, step-children or step-parents.
Ideally, the non-CFS participant will be a sedentary healthy adult (male or female), is on no regular medications (mild asthma medications okay and mild intermittent migraine okay), and is less than 100 kg in weight.
Dr. Kwiatek adds:
Those members who have purchased the paper over the internet will see that it is very technical. Basically we have applied several new mathematical techniques, one for the first time and which was developed in Australia. Consequently many of the anonymous international reviewers of the manuscript found the paper difficult to understand and expressed considerable scepticism about its remarkable results.
The standard approach of scientific medicine is that new findings need to be independently confirmed before the scientific community will view them as having reliability, and hence our keenness to do so with the current study. Please note that this new study contains several major improvements on that of the original study, implying that it has the chance to not only confirm but extend the original findings.
If we can confirm the results, we will have not only convincingly validated CFS as a disease construct, but provided a major insight into what is going wrong, at least in part, in the syndrome, and have done so with realistically a very simple methodology which is widely available internationally.
We then will have potentially set up a simple research system which can be used anywhere to design and investigate new treatments, the ultimate goal of all clinical research efforts.
For further information please contact (08) 8267 1767.
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