The Open Medicine Foundation (OMF) is proud to announce that it has funded $1.8 million for the establishment of a new ME/CFS Collaborative Research Center at the Harvard Medical School affiliated hospitals, which includes Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH), Brigham and Women’s Hospital, and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center.
The new Harvard Center will be led by OMF Scientific Advisory Board members Ronald G. Tompkins, MD, ScD, and Wenzhong Xiao, PhD, of Harvard University and will work synergistically with the ME/CFS Collaborative Research Center at Stanford led by Ronald W. Davis, PhD, of Stanford University, also funded by OMF. All science funded by OMF continues to be under the overall direction of our Scientific Advisory Board, directed by Ron Davis.
The goals for this new Harvard Collaborative Center are twofold. First is a basic research goal: to collect molecular data on muscle and other tissues affected by ME/CFS. Studies will include evaluation of patient muscle biopsies as compared to controls including genomics, proteomics, and ultrastructural analysis. Dr. Tompkins has extensive experience with such analysis on tissue from burn patients. He will be able to perform muscle biopsies, and possibly biopsies of other tissue types, greatly expanding the research, which has so far involved the analysis of blood cells. One focus of this new work will be to investigate the etiology of Post-Exertional Malaise (PEM).
The second goal is to establish a Clinical Trials Network to facilitate multi-center clinical studies on potential effective treatments for ME/CFS. The clinical resources at the MGH under Ron Tompkins, MD, are very extensive, making this an ideal site for overseeing and conducting clinical studies. This is a great opportunity to establish standards and the infrastructure for rigorous clinical trials.
Stanford ME/CFS Data Management and Coordination Center:
OMF is also funding the expansion of the Stanford Data Center for the Severely Ill Patients (SIPS) Study to encompass all the data from the Stanford and Harvard ME/CFS Collaborative Research Centers, as well as data from any other research we are funding.
The clinical results from the SIPS are currently already open to researchers with access via our website. This expanded data center will give researchers quick access to massive amounts of research data.