all Chronic Fatigue/M.E. Fibromyalgia

CFS Epstein Barr Virus Connection, Key To A Cure?

May 4

Could the latest research into the CFS Epstein Barr Virus connection shed light on how to treat, and possibly cure Chronic Fatigue Syndrome?

The research currently being done into the CFS Epstein Barr Virus connection, is some of the most exciting and hopeful news that has come to the world of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome in a long time. On the cutting edge of this research is a neuroscientist by the name of Michael VanElzakker.

Van Elzakker proposes that herpesviruses like Epstein Barr (HHV-4) can latently hang around the vagus nerve.  These can become reactivated when trauma or undo stress is present.  The vagus nerve is the largest in the body with tentacles that reach out to most of the organs. It is the direct conduit of the nervous system to the brain.


Surrounding and protecting the vagus nerve are ‘glial cells’.  When the virus re-activates, it runs into these cells causing them to send signals to the brain that an active infection is present.  The brain then goes into “Oh no, we’re sick! Time to shut down and isolate!” mode.  Hence, the severe fatigue and flu-like symptoms of CFS. Around 90% of the population will test positive for the EBV virus, however only a small percentage will develop chronic problems with re-activation.

Are 'glial cells' the leading culprits in Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome? Click To Tweet

Interestingly, these glial cells could also be the leading culprits in Fibromyalgia.  The cells will produce pro-inflammatory and neuroexcitatory compounds, called cytokines, as they sense the presence of infection.  If this happens around the dorsal horn of the spinal cord, it causes the body to produce an exaggerated pain response. When this goes on long enough, the pain response becomes permanently ‘turned on’ instead of shutting down as it normally would.   Thus validating the theory of activated glial cells being a possible cause of FMS.

CFS Epstein Barr Virus Connection, Key To A Cure?

May 12 is Fibromyalgia and CFS awareness day! Make your presence known, and your voice heard! Click To Tweet

So, providing that funding for research is met and Van Elzakker’s theories are proven, what does this mean for those of us who suffer from CFS?  Here are a few possibilities:

  • Glial cell inhibitors which stop the immune system activation (fatigue/flu symptoms, ect.) could be used in treatment~

  • Antiviral medication that attack the pathogens (things that are the cause of disease) may be implemented~

  • Possible vagus nerve stimulation or even surgery on the vagus nerve could be a future scenario~

For now, we can hope that these findings will capture the attention of the medical community where the latest news on the CFS Epstein Barr Virus connection is concerned. Most important though, is the hope that it attracts those who are responsible for funding research.  Unfortunately, it’s all about the money when it comes to finding cures.  On our part we can continue to bring awareness to these little known, often misunderstood ‘invisible diseases’.  

May 12 is Fibromyalgia and CFS awareness day! Make your presence known, and your voice heard!

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  • Reply Katie Cupcake Life With ME May 8 at 11:22 pm

    Oh wow, that’s really interesting! That all makes sense and I really hope it leads towards there finally being an effective treatment xx

    • Reply kristine May 9 at 5:43 am

      Me too Katie! It does make sense!

  • Reply jenny May 10 at 3:51 am

    I didn’t know they had a fibro day and my sister has it. Where have I been living? I only dream of a cure for her and for you and all suffers it must be such a battle each and every day. Bless. #sharewithme

  • Reply Nikki May 10 at 3:49 pm

    What a great in-depth article about CFS. I do not have this autoimmune disease but I have a different type and it is baffling that we don’t know much about them. That is so cool that they’re delving deep into CFS and perhaps coming up with a treatment that could help. So excited for you and other sufferers. Sharing this article so others can know that there is hope for those with CFS.
    Nikki recently posted…Social Media Blast-Pin It Baby!My Profile

    • Reply kristine May 10 at 9:02 pm

      Thank you so much Nikki, I hope this is all proven true. Would be an incredible breakthrough!

  • Reply Brandi Clevinger May 12 at 2:43 pm

    What an interesting theory. It makes sense, and I hope it can be applied so results can be examined. It would be amazing to have a breakthrough with this!
    Brandi Clevinger recently posted…Me and My Fibro FearMy Profile

    • Reply kristine May 13 at 9:37 am

      I agree, so many people’s lives could be improved tremendously!

  • Reply Lara May 15 at 3:22 pm

    So interesting! I have fibromyalgia and recently found out that I also have several viral infections. Since starting antivirals, I have found my fibro symptoms have eased a bit – especially the exhaustion (except when I overdo it!).

    • Reply kristine May 15 at 5:11 pm

      That is interesting Lara. The hypothesis makes sense, I hope the research continues! 🙂

  • Reply Deborah Davis May 15 at 7:42 pm

    I am so delighted that you shared this valuable information about the research currently being done into the CFS Epstein Barr Virus connection at the Healthy Happy Green Natural Party! I’m Pinning and sharing this!
    Deborah Davis recently posted…10 Delicious Soups You Can Make With Your NutriBullet That’ll Warm Your Body And HeartMy Profile

    • Reply kristine May 16 at 11:04 am

      Thank you for the opportunity Deborah! ♥

  • Reply Ge June 12 at 7:19 pm

    Hi! Thanks for sharing this new information. I hope and pray more researches and funds will be given to eventually find a cure to fibromyalgia patients who are also positive with EBS virus. It will be such a tremendous relief for all of us sufferers.

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