Activin B is a novel biomarker for chronic fatigue syndrome/myalgic encephalomyelitis (CFS/ME) diagnosis: A cross sectional study

Brett A. Lidbury, Badia Kita, Donald P. Lewis, Susan Hayward, Helen Ludlow, Mark P. Hedger, David M. de Kretser

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

Abstract

Background: Investigations of activin family proteins as serum biomarkers for chronic fatigue syndrome/myalgic encephalomyelitis (CFS/ME). CFS/ME is a disease with complex, wide-ranging symptoms, featuring persistent fatigue of 6 months or longer, particularly post exertion. No definitive biomarkers are available. Methods: A cross-sectional, observational study of CFS/ME patients fulfilling the 2003 Canadian Consensus Criteria, in parallel with healthy non-fatigued controls, was conducted. Comparisons with a previously defined activin reference population were also performed. For the total study cohort the age range was 18-65 years with a female: male participant ratio of greater than 3:1. All participants were assessed via a primary care community clinic. Blood samples were collected for pathology testing after physical examination and orthostatic intolerance assessment. Cytokines, activin A, activin B and follistatin were also measured in sera from these samples. All data were compared between the CFS/ME and control cohorts, with the activins and follistatin also compared with previously defined reference intervals. Results: Serum activin B levels for CFS/ME participants were significantly elevated when compared to the study controls, as well as the established reference interval. Serum activin A and follistatin were within their normal ranges. All routine and special pathology markers were within the normal laboratory reference intervals for the total study cohort, with no significant differences detected between CFS/ME and control groups. Also, no significant differences were detected for IL-2, IL-4, IL-6, IL-10, IL-17A, TNF or IFN-gamma. Conclusion: Elevated activin B levels together with normal activin A levels identified patients with the diagnostic symptoms of CFS/ME, thus providing a novel serum based test. The activins have multiple physiological roles and capture the diverse array of symptoms experienced by CFS/ME patients.

LanguageEnglish
Article number60
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Translational Medicine
Volume15
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 16 Mar 2017

Keywords

  • Activins
  • Biomarker
  • Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS)
  • Diagnosis
  • Myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME)

Cite this

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title = "Activin B is a novel biomarker for chronic fatigue syndrome/myalgic encephalomyelitis (CFS/ME) diagnosis: A cross sectional study",
abstract = "Background: Investigations of activin family proteins as serum biomarkers for chronic fatigue syndrome/myalgic encephalomyelitis (CFS/ME). CFS/ME is a disease with complex, wide-ranging symptoms, featuring persistent fatigue of 6 months or longer, particularly post exertion. No definitive biomarkers are available. Methods: A cross-sectional, observational study of CFS/ME patients fulfilling the 2003 Canadian Consensus Criteria, in parallel with healthy non-fatigued controls, was conducted. Comparisons with a previously defined activin reference population were also performed. For the total study cohort the age range was 18-65 years with a female: male participant ratio of greater than 3:1. All participants were assessed via a primary care community clinic. Blood samples were collected for pathology testing after physical examination and orthostatic intolerance assessment. Cytokines, activin A, activin B and follistatin were also measured in sera from these samples. All data were compared between the CFS/ME and control cohorts, with the activins and follistatin also compared with previously defined reference intervals. Results: Serum activin B levels for CFS/ME participants were significantly elevated when compared to the study controls, as well as the established reference interval. Serum activin A and follistatin were within their normal ranges. All routine and special pathology markers were within the normal laboratory reference intervals for the total study cohort, with no significant differences detected between CFS/ME and control groups. Also, no significant differences were detected for IL-2, IL-4, IL-6, IL-10, IL-17A, TNF or IFN-gamma. Conclusion: Elevated activin B levels together with normal activin A levels identified patients with the diagnostic symptoms of CFS/ME, thus providing a novel serum based test. The activins have multiple physiological roles and capture the diverse array of symptoms experienced by CFS/ME patients.",
keywords = "Activins, Biomarker, Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), Diagnosis, Myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME)",
author = "Lidbury, {Brett A.} and Badia Kita and Lewis, {Donald P.} and Susan Hayward and Helen Ludlow and Hedger, {Mark P.} and {de Kretser}, {David M.}",
year = "2017",
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doi = "10.1186/s12967-017-1161-4",
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Activin B is a novel biomarker for chronic fatigue syndrome/myalgic encephalomyelitis (CFS/ME) diagnosis : A cross sectional study. / Lidbury, Brett A.; Kita, Badia; Lewis, Donald P.; Hayward, Susan; Ludlow, Helen; Hedger, Mark P.; de Kretser, David M.

In: Journal of Translational Medicine, Vol. 15, No. 1, 60, 16.03.2017.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

TY - JOUR

T1 - Activin B is a novel biomarker for chronic fatigue syndrome/myalgic encephalomyelitis (CFS/ME) diagnosis

T2 - Journal of Translational Medicine

AU - Lidbury,Brett A.

AU - Kita,Badia

AU - Lewis,Donald P.

AU - Hayward,Susan

AU - Ludlow,Helen

AU - Hedger,Mark P.

AU - de Kretser,David M.

PY - 2017/3/16

Y1 - 2017/3/16

N2 - Background: Investigations of activin family proteins as serum biomarkers for chronic fatigue syndrome/myalgic encephalomyelitis (CFS/ME). CFS/ME is a disease with complex, wide-ranging symptoms, featuring persistent fatigue of 6 months or longer, particularly post exertion. No definitive biomarkers are available. Methods: A cross-sectional, observational study of CFS/ME patients fulfilling the 2003 Canadian Consensus Criteria, in parallel with healthy non-fatigued controls, was conducted. Comparisons with a previously defined activin reference population were also performed. For the total study cohort the age range was 18-65 years with a female: male participant ratio of greater than 3:1. All participants were assessed via a primary care community clinic. Blood samples were collected for pathology testing after physical examination and orthostatic intolerance assessment. Cytokines, activin A, activin B and follistatin were also measured in sera from these samples. All data were compared between the CFS/ME and control cohorts, with the activins and follistatin also compared with previously defined reference intervals. Results: Serum activin B levels for CFS/ME participants were significantly elevated when compared to the study controls, as well as the established reference interval. Serum activin A and follistatin were within their normal ranges. All routine and special pathology markers were within the normal laboratory reference intervals for the total study cohort, with no significant differences detected between CFS/ME and control groups. Also, no significant differences were detected for IL-2, IL-4, IL-6, IL-10, IL-17A, TNF or IFN-gamma. Conclusion: Elevated activin B levels together with normal activin A levels identified patients with the diagnostic symptoms of CFS/ME, thus providing a novel serum based test. The activins have multiple physiological roles and capture the diverse array of symptoms experienced by CFS/ME patients.

AB - Background: Investigations of activin family proteins as serum biomarkers for chronic fatigue syndrome/myalgic encephalomyelitis (CFS/ME). CFS/ME is a disease with complex, wide-ranging symptoms, featuring persistent fatigue of 6 months or longer, particularly post exertion. No definitive biomarkers are available. Methods: A cross-sectional, observational study of CFS/ME patients fulfilling the 2003 Canadian Consensus Criteria, in parallel with healthy non-fatigued controls, was conducted. Comparisons with a previously defined activin reference population were also performed. For the total study cohort the age range was 18-65 years with a female: male participant ratio of greater than 3:1. All participants were assessed via a primary care community clinic. Blood samples were collected for pathology testing after physical examination and orthostatic intolerance assessment. Cytokines, activin A, activin B and follistatin were also measured in sera from these samples. All data were compared between the CFS/ME and control cohorts, with the activins and follistatin also compared with previously defined reference intervals. Results: Serum activin B levels for CFS/ME participants were significantly elevated when compared to the study controls, as well as the established reference interval. Serum activin A and follistatin were within their normal ranges. All routine and special pathology markers were within the normal laboratory reference intervals for the total study cohort, with no significant differences detected between CFS/ME and control groups. Also, no significant differences were detected for IL-2, IL-4, IL-6, IL-10, IL-17A, TNF or IFN-gamma. Conclusion: Elevated activin B levels together with normal activin A levels identified patients with the diagnostic symptoms of CFS/ME, thus providing a novel serum based test. The activins have multiple physiological roles and capture the diverse array of symptoms experienced by CFS/ME patients.

KW - Activins

KW - Biomarker

KW - Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS)

KW - Diagnosis

KW - Myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME)

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DO - 10.1186/s12967-017-1161-4

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