Friday, September 2, 2016

A new mascot for M.E.

The M.E. community has been stirred into unusual activity for spoonies, by the recent research by the Naviauxs, Gordon, et al, showing the peculiar metabolic profile of M.E. patients.

"Despite the heterogeneity of CFS, the diversity of factors that lead to this condition, our findings show that the cellular metabolic response is the same in patients,” said Naviaux. “And interestingly, it’s chemically similar to the dauer state you see in some organisms, which kicks in when environmental stresses trigger a slow-down in metabolism to permit survival under conditions that might otherwise cause cell death. In CFS, this slow-down comes at the cost of long-term pain and disability....This work opens a fresh path to both understanding the biology of CFS and, more importantly to patients, a robust, rational way to develop new therapeutics for a disease sorely in need of them.” -quotation from UCSD News

This metabolic condition's getting described as being like hibernation, so a whole lot of cartoon bears have been cropping up in MEmes. It's time to correct that picture, and give some exposure to our real nearest metabolic cousin, the dauer worm, Caenorhabditis elegans. Let us (gently) embrace our new mascot, not a bear, but a lovely little worm who even comes, as seen in its wikipedia photo, already wearing our awareness color. 

Thanks to the ME community online for input into the development of this graphic. - Creek