Ron Davis, a professor of biochemistry and genetics at Stamford University in California, surprised many of his colleagues by studying a disease they have never heard of. This disease by the name of myalgic encephalomyelitis, commonly known as chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS), had attacked Mr. Ron’s son, Whitney Dafoe, in his late 20s. Dafoe, who is now 37 years was left bedbound, unable to speak, and incapable of eating solid food.
Before shifting to studying myalgic encephalomyelitis seven years ago, Mr. Davis’ work laid a foundation for the Human Genome Project, revolutionizing modern biology by giving scientists a complete blueprint of all genes in the human body.
Davis currently holds several Nobel peace prize-winning colleagues after his latest quest to cure ME/CFS. According to the US Center for Disease Control and Prevention, ME/CFS affects 836,000 and 2.5 million Americans. The agency estimates 17 to 24 million people are affected by ME/CFS.
The Link BetwenCovid-19 and CM/CFS
ME/CFS symptoms include brain fog, muscle pain, and post-exertional malaise. During the covid-19 pandemic, Davis’ search for a chronic fatigue syndrome cure could shed light on understanding why some covid-19 long haulers last up to one year.
This scientist believes that a huge number of viruses can trigger chronic fatigue syndrome. Furthermore, his deductions suggest that the previous SARS or MERS virus could also result in the disease. Although this information is not well documented, the SARS and MERS symptoms look almost precisely like ME/CFS.
Mr. Davis believes the covid-19 symptoms convert into an ME/CFS case during the infection. He also connects the possibility of people with covid-19 getting over ME/CFS if they rest a little longer. During an interview with CNN, the scientist also noted that if one is fatigued after a prolonged major infection like the flu or any major viral infection, the fatigue could be ME/CFS.
Possible Diagnostic Blood Test for ME/CFS?
Mr. Davis and his colleagues have been working on a test by the name of nanoneedle. This test has recorded significant positive results. Over 50 sick people resulted in a positive test, healthy people turning out to be negative. Although most diagnostic tests show some false positive or false negative, so far, this test has zero.
Now it’s possible to tell healthy people from the sick ones by just conducting this test. This information alone is helpful since it says something is wrong with the person, even if it is not specific to the disease.
“We can make it easy to do and cheap, probably within a couple of years, provided we get funding,” Mr. Davis stated during an interview with CNN.