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By National CFIDS Foundation Medical Committee - © 2019

From Summer 2019 Forum

ME Research UK recently announced the funding for a research study on anticitrullinated antibody signatures in CFIDS/ME. The principle investigator is Dr. Mercedes Rincon, a Professor of Medicine at the University of Vermont

The National CF IDS Foundation staff had learned that another CFIDS/ME group here in the U.S. had pursued a previous pilot study with Dr Rincon regarding the presence of anti-citrullinated antibodies in patients. Because the NCF had direct information that linked the utilization of anti-citrullinated antibodies to assess radiation injuries and exposure in humans, the NCF thought that it would be in the its best interest to contact Dr. Rincon.

More than a year ago, the NCF reached out to Dr. Rincon and spoke with her over the phone. The NCF then forwarded various pertinent information to her via email to get her feedback per our conversation. Unfortunately, the NCF didn’t receive a reply.

Now, the NCF is supplying this information here so that interested patients and physicians will have easy access. The NCF’s policy has always been to readily share important information with other CFIDS/ME organizations in an attempt to further the disease knowledgebase.

What the NCF found was a U.S. patent assigned to the Henry M. Jackson Foundation for the Advancement of Military Medicine. It was issued in June 2015 and outlines an immunoassay for citrullinated proteins using an antibody to assess radiation injury and exposure. The inventor is Dr. Natalia Ossetrova who is a scientist at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (USUHS), Armed Forces Radiobiology Research Institute (AFRRI) in Bethesda, Maryland. According to this patent, “This invention was made in part with Government support under Award No. HU000l-05-D-0005 awarded by the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences. The Govermnent may have certain rights in the invention.” Furthermore, “the ‘detection’ kit provides an antibody to citrullinated proteins, and reagents for conducting an immunoassay. In certain embodiments, the antibody that binds citrullinated proteins may be bound to a solid support, such as a column matrix or well of a microtiter plate.”

Likewise, according to the patent, “The methods of the invention include assessment of other diagnostic information indicative of radiation exposure. For example, in addition to hematological parameters, assessment of physiological signs and symptoms exhibited by the subject and an estimate of the dose of radiation that the subject was exposed to can be integrated with results of amounts of citrullinated proteins to improve the assessment of radiation injury and exposure. Physiological signs and symptoms that may be indicative of radiation exposure include signs and symptoms relating to the subject’s neurovascular system (e.g. nausea, vomiting, anorexia, fatigue syndrome, fever, headache, hypotension, neurological deficits, cognitive deficits), hematopoietic system (e.g. lymphocyte changes, granulocyte changes, thrombocyte changes, blood loss, infection), cutaneous system (e.g. erythema, sensation/itching, swelling/edema, blistering, desquamation, ulcer/necrosis, hair loss, ocycholysis), and/or gastrointestinal system (e.g. diarrhea, abdominal cramps/pain).”

Dr. Rincon was unaware that anti-citrullinated antibodies could be used to assess radiation injury and radiation exposure and that is why the NCF sent a copy of this patent to her for her perusal and feedback. The NCF will be forwarding this information directly to ME Research UK as well.


1. Immunoassays for citrullinated proteins; U.S. Patent #9,063,l48: Applicant; Ossetrova, Natalia; Assignee: The Henry M. Jackson Foundation for the Advancement of Military Medicine Inc.; Filed: October 22, 2009; Issued: June 23, 2015

2. Dr. Natalia Ossetrova;


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