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Illnesses of Unknown Etiology

Section Edited by Monica C. Panelli

This section aims to provide a translational medicine forum for the publication of research on illnesses, multi-system diseases and syndromes of unknown etiology. Examples of these include Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME)/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) and Fibromyalgia Syndrome (FMS).

There has been a continuous albeit undervalued progress in this arena. However, among the many medical specialties that try to diagnose and treat the multiple symptoms presented by patients affected by these diseases, an avenue of rapid and simultaneous communication is missing.

Studies on all aspects of ME/CFS and multi-system diseases of unknown cause with applications in medicine and biotechnology will be considered for publication. The section welcomes contributions that employ traditional clinical, metabolic, epidemiologic, genomics and proteomics methods as diagnostic and prognostic tools.

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  1. Myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS) is a multifactorial disease with an unexplained aetiology in which viral infections are possible trigger factors.

    Authors: Santa Rasa-Dzelzkaleja, Angelika Krumina, Svetlana Capenko, Zaiga Nora-Krukle, Sabine Gravelsina, Anda Vilmane, Lauma Ievina, Yehuda Shoenfeld and Modra Murovska
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2023 21:33
  2. Myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS) is a debilitating chronic disease that lacks known pathogenesis, distinctive diagnostic criteria, and effective treatment options. Understanding the ...

    Authors: Sayoni Das, Krystyna Taylor, James Kozubek, Jason Sardell and Steve Gardner
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2022 20:598
  3. Muscle fatigue and pain are key symptoms of Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CFS). Although the pathophysiology is not yet fully understood, there is ample evidence for hypoperfusion whic...

    Authors: Elisabeth Petter, Carmen Scheibenbogen, Peter Linz, Christian Stehning, Klaus Wirth, Titus Kuehne and Marcus Kelm
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2022 20:580
  4. In chronic fatigue syndrome/myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME/CFS), the capacity for activity and participation is strongly limited. The disease definition is very broad, and considering the lack of evidence for b...

    Authors: Gabriella Bernhoff, Eva Rasmussen-Barr and Lina Bunketorp Käll
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2022 20:577
  5. Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CFS) is characterized by persistent physical and mental fatigue. The post-COVID-19 condition patients refer physical fatigue and cognitive impairment sequ...

    Authors: N. Azcue, J. C. Gómez-Esteban, M. Acera, B. Tijero, T. Fernandez, N. Ayo-Mentxakatorre, T. Pérez-Concha, A. Murueta-Goyena, J. V. Lafuente, Á. Prada, A. López de Munain, G. Ruiz-Irastorza, L. Ribacoba, I. Gabilondo and R. Del Pino
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2022 20:569
  6. Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) has been shown to influence clinical pain, descending modulation, and exercise-induced symptom worsening. COMT regulates nociceptive processing and inflammation, key pathoph...

    Authors: Andrea Polli, Jolien Hendrix, Kelly Ickmans, Jelena Bakusic, Manosij Ghosh, Dora Monteyne, Brigitte Velkeniers, Bram Bekaert, Jo Nijs and Lode Godderis
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2022 20:487
  7. Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CFS) is a debilitating condition that can lead to severe impairment of physical, psychological, cognitive, social, and occupational functions. The cause o...

    Authors: Zheng Wang, Michelle F. Waldman, Tara J. Basavanhally, Aviva R. Jacobs, Gonzalo Lopez, Regis Y. Perichon, Johnny J. Ma, Elyse M. Mackenzie, James B. Healy, Yixin Wang and Sarah A. Hersey
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2022 20:486
  8. Patients with long-COVID often complain of continuous fatigue, myalgia, sleep problems, cognitive dysfunction, and post-exertional malaise. No data are available on EMG recording of evoked myopotentials (M-wav...

    Authors: Frédérique Retornaz, Stanislas Rebaudet, Chloé Stavris and Yves Jammes
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2022 20:429
  9. There is no approved pharmaceutical intervention for Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/ Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CFS). Fatigue in these patients can last for decades. Long COVID may continue to ME/CFS, and current...

    Authors: Alan Cash and David Lyons Kaufman
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2022 20:295
  10. The aim of this study was to explore the tolerability and effect of static stretching (SS) and whole body cryotherapy (WBC) upon fatigue, daytime sleepiness, cognitive functioning and objective and subjective ...

    Authors: Sławomir Kujawski, Joanna Słomko, Beata R. Godlewska, Agnieszka Cudnoch-Jędrzejewska, Modra Murovska, Julia L. Newton, Łukasz Sokołowski and Paweł Zalewski
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2022 20:273
  11. This study aims to provide 12-year nationwide epidemiology data to investigate the epidemiology and comorbidities of and therapeutic options for chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) by analyzing the National Health ...

    Authors: Kam-Hang Leong, Hei-Tung Yip, Chien-Feng Kuo and Shin-Yi Tsai
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2022 20:268
  12. Molecular chaperones assist protein folding, facilitate degradation of misfolded polypeptides, and thereby maintain protein homeostasis. Impaired chaperone activity leads to defective protein quality control t...

    Authors: Manar Elkenani, Amal Z. Barakat, Torsten Held, Daniel Marques Rodrigues, Sherok Mobarak, Surabhi Swarnka, Ibrahim M. Adham and Belal A. Mohamed
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2022 20:229
  13. Fatigue, exertion intolerance and post-exertional malaise are among the most frequent symptoms of Post-COVID Syndrome (PCS), with a subset of patients fulfilling criteria for Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic ...

    Authors: Milan Haffke, Helma Freitag, Gordon Rudolf, Martina Seifert, Wolfram Doehner, Nadja Scherbakov, Leif Hanitsch, Kirsten Wittke, Sandra Bauer, Frank Konietschke, Friedemann Paul, Judith Bellmann-Strobl, Claudia Kedor, Carmen Scheibenbogen and Franziska Sotzny
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2022 20:138
  14. Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) has been shown to be associated with infections. Tuberculosis (TB) is a highly prevalent infectious disease. Patients with chronic fatigue syndrome and post-tuberculosis experien...

    Authors: Tse-Yen Yang, Cheng-Li Lin, Wei-Cheng Yao, Chon-Fu Lio, Wen-Po Chiang, Kuan Lin, Chien-Feng Kuo and Shin-Yi Tsai
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2022 20:99
  15. Orthostatic intolerance-OI is common in Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome-ME/CFS. We used a 10-min passive vertical lean test as orthostatic challenge-OC and measured changes in vitals and end...

    Authors: Benjamin H. Natelson, Jin-Mann S. Lin, Michelle Blate, Sarah Khan, Yang Chen and Elizabeth R. Unger
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2022 20:95
  16. Myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS) is a serious disorder of unknown aetiology. While the pathomechanism of ME/CFS remains elusive, reduced natural killer (NK) cell cytotoxic function i...

    Authors: Natalie Eaton-Fitch, Stanley Du Preez, Hélène Cabanas, Katsuhiko Muraki, Donald Staines and Sonya Marshall-Gradisnik
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2022 20:94
  17. Nearly 250,000 veterans from the 1990–1991 Gulf War have Gulf War Illness (GWI), a condition with heterogeneous pathobiology that remains difficult to diagnose. As such, availability of blood biomarkers that r...

    Authors: Sarah Oberlin, Aurore Nkiliza, Megan Parks, James E. Evans, Nancy Klimas, Andrew P. Keegan, Kimberly Sullivan, Maxine H. Krengel, Michael Mullan, Fiona Crawford and Laila Abdullah
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2022 20:73
  18. Because of the absence of biological parameters for fatigue, appropriate instruments for assessing the degree of fatigue are important in the diagnosis and management of people complaining of fatigue-like symp...

    Authors: Eun-Jin Lim and Chang-Gue Son
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2022 20:8
  19. Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is an X-linked inherited disease caused by mutations in the gene encoding dystrophin that leads to a severe and ultimately life limiting muscle-wasting condition. Recombinant ...

    Authors: Anna Creisméas, Claire Gazaille, Audrey Bourdon, Marc-Antoine Lallemand, Virginie François, Marine Allais, Mireille Ledevin, Thibaut Larcher, Gilles Toumaniantz, Aude Lafoux, Corinne Huchet, Ignacio Anegon, Oumeya Adjali, Caroline Le Guiner and Bodvaël Fraysse
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2021 19:519
  20. Myasthenia gravis is a neuromuscular autoimmune disorder characterized by weakness and disability in the voluntary muscles. There have been several preliminary studies on the epidemiology of myasthenia gravis ...

    Authors: Nader Salari, Behnaz Fatahi, Yalda Bartina, Mohsen Kazeminia, Reza Fatahian, Payam Mohammadi, Shamarina Shohaimi and Masoud Mohammadi
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2021 19:516
  21. Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) is a long-term disabling illness accompanied by medically unexplained fatigue. This study aimed to explore the epidemiological characteristics of CFS in South Korea.

    Authors: Eun-Jin Lim, Jin-Seok Lee, Eun-Jung Lee, Seok-Ju Jeong, Ho-Young Park, Yo-Chan Ahn and Chang-Gue Son
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2021 19:502
  22. The maintained attention is the cause of great functional limitations in CFS/ME, a disease that mainly affects women in the central period of life. Cognitive function is explored using the Montreal Cognitive A...

    Authors: Iñigo Murga, Larraitz Aranburu, Pascual A. Gargiulo, Juan-Carlos Gómez-Esteban and José-Vicente Lafuente
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2021 19:494
  23. There is accumulating evidence of endothelial dysfunction, muscle and cerebral hypoperfusion in Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CFS). In this paper we deduce the pathomechanisms resultin...

    Authors: Klaus J. Wirth, Carmen Scheibenbogen and Friedemann Paul
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2021 19:471

    The Correction to this article has been published in Journal of Translational Medicine 2022 20:25

    The Letter to the Editor to this article has been published in Journal of Translational Medicine 2022 20:40

  24. Long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs), functioning as competing endogenous RNAs (ceRNAs), have been reported to play important roles in the pathogenesis of autoimmune diseases. However, little is known about the regu...

    Authors: Shuang Li, Xu Wang, Tianfeng Wang, Huixue Zhang, Xiaoyu Lu, Li Liu, Lifang Li, Chunrui Bo, Xiaotong Kong, Si Xu, Shangwei Ning, Jianjian Wang and Lihua Wang
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2021 19:468
  25. The length of time for clinical improvement of patients with thymomatous myasthenia gravis (MG) after extended thymectomy is not clear. The purpose of this study was to determine the length of time after thyme...

    Authors: Zhu Haoshuai, Zou Jianyong, Yang Lei, Zeng Bo, Jiefei Xiao, Xin Zhang, Zhenguang Chen and Su Chunhua
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2021 19:413
  26. Myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS) is a complex illness which disproportionally affects females. This illness is associated with immune and metabolic perturbations that may be influenc...

    Authors: Aurore Nkiliza, Megan Parks, Adam Cseresznye, Sarah Oberlin, James E. Evans, Teresa Darcey, Kristina Aenlle, Daniel Niedospial, Michael Mullan, Fiona Crawford, Nancy Klimas and Laila Abdullah
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2021 19:370
  27. Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CFS) is a serious multifactorial disorder. The origin remains ambiguous, however reduced natural killer (NK) cell cytotoxicity is a consistent immunologic...

    Authors: Natalie Eaton-Fitch, Hélène Cabanas, Stanley du Preez, Donald Staines and Sonya Marshall-Gradisnik
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2021 19:306
  28. An accurate prediction for prognosis can help in guiding the therapeutic options and optimizing the trial design for generalized myasthenia gravis (gMG). We aimed to develop and validate a predictive nomogram ...

    Authors: Rui Zhao, Ying Wang, Xiao Huan, Huahua Zhong, Zhirui Zhou, Jianying Xi, Yuwei Da, Lin Lei, Ting Chang, Zhe Ruan, Lijun Luo, Shengnan Li, Huan Yang, Yi Li, Sushan Luo and Chongbo Zhao
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2021 19:285
  29. Orthostatic intolerance (OI) is a frequent finding in individuals with myalgic encephalomyelitis /chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS). Published studies have proposed that deconditioning is an important pathophy...

    Authors: C. (Linda) M. C. van Campen, Peter C. Rowe and Frans C. Visser
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2021 19:193
  30. Chronic Fatigue Syndrome or Myalgic Encephaloymelitis (ME/CFS) is a frequent debilitating disease with an enigmatic etiology. The finding of autoantibodies against ß2-adrenergic receptors (ß2AdR) prompted us t...

    Authors: Klaus J. Wirth and Carmen Scheibenbogen
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2021 19:162
  31. Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CFS) is a complex and debilitating disease accompanied by muscular fatigue and pain. A functional measure to assess muscle fatigability of ME/CFS patients...

    Authors: Bianka Jäkel, Claudia Kedor, Patricia Grabowski, Kirsten Wittke, Silvia Thiel, Nadja Scherbakov, Wolfram Doehner, Carmen Scheibenbogen and Helma Freitag
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2021 19:159
  32. Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CFS) is a debilitating illness, characterised by persistent fatigue that is unrelieved by rest, in combination with a range of other disabling symptoms. T...

    Authors: Rebekah Maksoud, Cassandra Balinas, Sean Holden, Hélène Cabanas, Donald Staines and Sonya Marshall-Gradisnik
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2021 19:81
  33. Authors: L. D. Crosby, S. Kalanidhi, A. Bonilla, A. Subramanian, J. S. Ballon and H. Bonilla
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2021 19:50

    The Correction to this article has been published in Journal of Translational Medicine 2021 19:217

  34. Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) is defined according to subjective symptoms only, and several conflicting case definition exist. Previous research has discovered certain biological alterations. The aim of the p...

    Authors: Tarjei Tørre Asprusten, Line Sletner and Vegard Bruun Bratholm Wyller
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2021 19:48
  35. Due to the inconsistent use of diagnostic criteria in myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS), it is unsure whether physiotherapeutic management regarded effective in ME/CFS is appropriate ...

    Authors: Marjon E. A. Wormgoor and Sanne C. Rodenburg
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2021 19:1
  36. Chronic fatigue syndrome/myalgic encephalomyelitis (CFS/ME) is understood as a complex condition, likely triggered and sustained by an interplay of biological, psychological, and social factors. Little oversig...

    Authors: Ashley Elizabeth Muller, Kari Tveito, Inger Johanne Bakken, Signe A. Flottorp, Siri Mjaaland and Lillebeth Larun
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2020 18:484
  37. Q fever fatigue syndrome (QFS) is characterised by a state of prolonged fatigue that is seen in 20% of acute Q fever infections and has major health-related consequences. The molecular mechanisms underlying QF...

    Authors: Ruud P. H. Raijmakers, Megan E. Roerink, Anne F. M. Jansen, Stephan P. Keijmel, Ranko Gacesa, Yang Li, Leo A. B. Joosten, Jos W. M. van der Meer, Mihai G. Netea, Chantal P. Bleeker-Rovers and Cheng-Jian Xu
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2020 18:448
  38. Approximately 2.5 million people in the U.S. suffer from myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS). This disease negatively impacts patients’ ability to function, often resulting in difficult...

    Authors: Turner Palombo, Andrea Campos, Suzanne D. Vernon and Shad Roundy
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2020 18:423
  39. Marine lipids contain omega-3 fatty acids that can be metabolized into anti-inflammatory and pro-resolving mediators—namely 17-HDHA and 18-HEPE—which can serve as modulators of the pain experience. The purpose...

    Authors: Nini Callan, Doug Hanes and Ryan Bradley
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2020 18:401
  40. Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CFS) is a debilitating disease of unknown etiology lasting for a minimum of 6 months but usually for many years, with features including fatigue, cognitiv...

    Authors: Ludovic Giloteaux, Adam O’Neal, Jesús Castro-Marrero, Susan M. Levine and Maureen R. Hanson
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2020 18:387
  41. Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CFS) is a serious and complex physical illness that affects all body systems with a multiplicity of symptoms, but key hallmarks of the disease are pervasi...

    Authors: Eiren Sweetman, Torsten Kleffmann, Christina Edgar, Michel de Lange, Rosamund Vallings and Warren Tate
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2020 18:365
  42. Since the 1990s, neuroimaging has been utilised to study Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CFS), a debilitating illness with unknown aetiology. While brain abnormalities in ME/CFS have bee...

    Authors: Zack Y. Shan, Leighton R. Barnden, Richard A. Kwiatek, Sandeep Bhuta, Daniel F. Hermens and Jim Lagopoulos
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2020 18:335
  43. Lightheadedness, fatigue, weakness, heart palpitations, cognitive dysfunction, muscle pain, and exercise intolerance are some of the symptoms of orthostatic intolerance (OI). There is substantial comorbidity o...

    Authors: Jihyun Lee, Suzanne D. Vernon, Patricia Jeys, Weam Ali, Andrea Campos, Derya Unutmaz, Brayden Yellman and Lucinda Bateman
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2020 18:314
  44. Patients with Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CFS) or Systemic Exertion Intolerance Disease (SEID) present with a constellation of symptoms including debilitating fatigue that is unrelie...

    Authors: Sean Holden, Rebekah Maksoud, Natalie Eaton-Fitch, Hélène Cabanas, Donald Staines and Sonya Marshall-Gradisnik
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2020 18:290

    The Correction to this article has been published in Journal of Translational Medicine 2020 18:407

  45. Myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS) is a debilitating disease with unknown causes. From the perspectives on the etiology and pathophysiology, ME/CFS has been labeled differently, which ...

    Authors: Eun-Jin Lim and Chang-Gue Son
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2020 18:289

    The Letter to the Editor to this article has been published in Journal of Translational Medicine 2020 18:447

  46. Post-exertional malaise (PEM), the cardinal feature of myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS), occurs generally after exposure to a stressor. It is characterized by the worsening of ME/CFS...

    Authors: Alaa Ghali, Paul Richa, Carole Lacout, Aline Gury, Anne-Berengere Beucher, Chadi Homedan, Christian Lavigne and Geoffrey Urbanski
    Citation: Journal of Translational Medicine 2020 18:246

Previously published in Journal of Translational Medicine

Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME)/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) articles