New-Found Virus XMRV

A new diagnostic test for Xenotropic Murine Leukemia-Related Virus (XMRV) has become available thanks to Cooperative Diagnostics, LLC. The new test should help physicians diagnose cases of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and other disorders that might result from this virus. The general public will be able to receive testing, as well.

The new test is known as the Simplex XMRV test and can identify patients who have become infected with XMRV. This virus has been implicated in as many as 95% of all chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) sufferers, but is also present in a large number of patients afflicted with atypical multiple sclerosis, fibromyalgia, and certain other medical conditions. The company states that their XMRV assay will be the first diagnostic test to be made available to the general public.

Mental Anguish

Brent C. Satterfield, Ph.D., the president and CEO of Cooperative Diagnostics, LLC comments, "This may well be the fulfillment of a promise that I made a number of years ago to two good friends, who both became ill from Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. I saw firsthand the mental anguish they endured by those closest to them including the medical community as they were told their condition could be psychological."

Satterfield describes how the company became interested in developing a diagnostic test for the virus when their researchers realized the high incidence of XMRV in those patients who suffer from chronic fatigue syndrome. Dr. Satterfield was happy at the prospect that his friends and all others who suffer from the ailment might be able to obtain testing without a physician consultation and prescription.

Not Cheap

The XMRV test put out by Cooperative Diagnostics uses its previously developed technologies for real-time PCR nucleic acid detection. The assay can find the presence of the virus inside blood cells. Anyone can buy the test online, but it isn't cheap at $399.00. The public may not see the point in paying for the diagnostic test, since knowing that the virus is present is of interest mainly to researchers. Should it really be the responsibility of patients to diagnose their own diseases? How is it helpful for a CFS sufferer to confirm the presence of XMRV? These are questions that informed consumers may wish to ask before shelling out the big bucks for this test in a difficult economic climate.

Cooperative Diagnostics has employed the services of Clinical Reference Laboratory, Inc. (CRL), to ensure that the assays will be processed in a quality manner. Dr. Heather Newkirk, Executive Director of CRL's Molecular Diagnostics comments, "This unique technology from Cooperative Diagnostics enables a powerful detection product which synergizes well with CRL's expertise in offering quality molecular services. We look forward to working with Cooperative Diagnostics to provide quality services."

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