Cytokine and other immunologic markers in chronic fatigue syndrome and their relation to neuropsychological factors

Roberto Patarca-Montero, Michael Antoni, Mary Ann Fletcher, Nancy G. Klimas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

76 Scopus citations

Abstract

The literature is reviewed and data are presented that relate to a model we have developed to account for the perpetuation of the perplexing disorder currently termed chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS). In patients with CFS there is chronic lymphocyte overactivation with cytokine abnormalities that include perturbations in plasma levels of proinflammatory cytokines and decrease in the ratio of Type 1 to Type 2 cytokines produced by lymphocytes in vitro following mitogen stimulation. The initiation of the syndrome is frequently sudden and often follows an acute viral illness. Our model for the subsequent chronicity of this disorder holds that the interaction of psychological factors (distress associated with either CFS-related symptoms or other stressful life events) and the immunologic dysfunction contribute to (a) CFS-related physical symptoms (e.g., perception of fatigue and cognitive difficulties, fever, muscle and joint pain) and increases in illness burden and (b) impaired immune surveillance associated with cytotoxic lymphocytes with resulting activation of latent herpes viruses.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)51-64
Number of pages14
JournalApplied Neuropsychology
Volume8
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2001

Keywords

  • Chronic fatigue syndrome
  • Cognitive difficulties
  • Cytokines
  • Immune activation
  • Natural killer cells
  • Proinflammatory cytokines
  • Type 1 and Type 2 cytokines

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology

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