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London ME Conference 2009

The 4th Annual London ME Conference which is organised by Invest in ME takes place in Birdcage Walk, London, on Friday 29th May 2009. This is the only major conference on ME/CFS in Europe this year and congratulations once again to Invest in ME for organising this event.
Unfortunately these occasions pass by too often without even the mildest interest from healthcare professionals so it is important for us all to pass the word around about this important event. The Irish ME Trust has just written to our new Chief Medical Officer Dr. Tony Holohan to see if his office would appoint a representative to be present on the day. We have also undertaken to cover all costs pertaining to this individual’s attendance, should the CMO take up the offer. There is also maximum CPD accreditation for the conference, which will count towards professional education.
We would also like to ask whether there is an ME-interested GP that our members are aware of who would undertake to travel to London for this important conference, in which case the Irish ME Trust will cover the full registration fee for attendance. Please contact us at if you know of such a doctor or healthcare professional.

The Conference Speakers are as follows:

Annette Whittemore

Founder and President of the Whittemore Peterson Institute for Neuroimmune Diseases, Reno, Nevada, USA.  The Institute will be built on the medical campus of the University of Nevada. Its mission is to serve those with complex neuro-immune diseases such as ME/CFS, viral induced central nervous system dysfunction and fibromyalgia.
Annette Whittemore graduated in Elementary and Special Education at the University of Nevada and taught children with neuro-cognitive deficits, such as those found in autism, ADD, and learning disabilities. As the director of the current operations at the Institute Annette supports the basic and clinical research program, and actively recruits physicians and other support personnel for the Institute.

Dr. Barbara Baumgarten

Head of the recently opened ME-centre at Ullevål University Hospital, Oslo, Norway.
Dr Baumgarten has seen ME patients in her private practice since 1997 and has had responsibility for specialised medical services for ME patients. Dr Baumgarten is a board member of the Oslo branch of the Norwegian Medical Association. The ME Centre in Oslo is unique in that patients have been closely involved in its formation.

Dr. Jonathan Kerr

Sir Joseph Hotung Senior Lecturer in Inflammation, St George's University of London. Dr. Kerr is now the principal investigator in a programme of research in ME/CFS. This involves development of a diagnostic test using mass spectrometry, analysis of human and viral gene expression in the white blood cells, and clinical trials of immunomodulatory drugs. He has recently published research identifying distinct subtypes in patients with ME/CFS.

Professor Kenny De Meirleir

Director of the Human Performance Laboratory and Fatigue Clinic, The Vrije Universiteit Brussels, Belgium.
Co author of the  book 'Chronic Fatigue Syndrome: A Biological Approach' and his published works cover many aspects of ME/CFS. Current research involves the gut and ME/CFS. He has seen over 12000 ME/CFS patients and we are hoping of exciting new research findings to be presented at the conference.

Dr. John Chia

Dr Chia is an infectious disease specialist practicing in Torrance, California, USA and has published research recently (Chronic fatigue syndrome  associated with chronic enterovirus infection of the stomach) on the role of enteroviruses in the aetiolgy of ME/CFS – an area which has been implicated as one of the causes by a number of studies. There are more than 70 different types of enteroviruses that can affect the central nervous system, heart and muscles, all of which is consistent with the symptoms of ME/CFS.  By analyzing samples of stomach tissue from 165 patients with CFS, Dr. Chia's team discovered that 82% of these individuals had high levels of enteroviruses in their digestive systems. Dr Chia's research may result in the development of antiviral drugs to treat the debilitating symptoms of ME/CFS.

Professor Garth Nicolson

President, Chief Scientific Officer and a Research Professor at the Institute for Molecular Medicine, Laguna Beach, California, USA. Conjoint Professor, Faculty of Science and Technology, University of Newcastle, Australia. Professor of Integrative Medicine, Capital University of Integrative Medicine, Washington DC.
Professor Nicolson has published over 550 papers, three of them current content citation classics, and his recent publications include: Chronic Fatigue Syndrome patients subsequently diagnosed with Lyme Disease Borrelia burgdorferi: evidence for Mycoplasma species co-infections; Chronic infections in neurodegenerative and neurobehavioral diseases; New emerging infections: Their development, testing and resulting disease.

Professor Harold Nyland

Department of Neurology, Haukeland University Hospital, Bergen, Norway.
Professor Nyland has seen several thousand ME patients, among them many severely ill. His recent research involves an ME/CFS Epidemic Following a Giardia lamblia Infection in Bergen. Professor Nyland was knighted in 2007 for his services of over 30 years for MS patients in Norway.

Professor Jonathan Brostoff
(conference chair)

Jonathan Brostoff is Senior Research Fellow and Professor Emeritus of Allergy and Environmental Health at Kings College, London. He was the Foundation Professor of Allergy and Environmental Health and Director of the Centre for Allergy Research at University College London. Whilst at University College Hospital he was Physician in charge of the Allergy Clinic.

He is recognized as a leading international authority on food allergy and intolerance. Professor Brostoff was involved in one of the few, and much-quoted Spect scan studies of ME patients [Brainstem perfusion is impaired in patients with chronic fatigue syndrome. Costa DC, Tannock C and Brostoff J. Quarterly Journal of Medicine 1995:88:767 773]

Dr. Daniel Peterson

Dr Dan Peterson is Medical Director, Whittemore Peterson Institute, Reno, Nevada, USA.
With over 25 years of medical practice, Dr Daniel L. Peterson has become a sought-after internist for diagnosing difficult and complex medical cases. When several patients in Incline Village became ill with symptoms that resembled persistent mononucleosis, Daniel Peterson was one of the first physicians to recognize an outbreak of what is known as ME/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CFS). He became a pioneering physician and researcher in understanding the biological characteristics and methods for diagnosing, managing and treating ME/CFS. He has also performed major studies of Ampligen as a treatment for ME/CFS, and studying the possible role of human herpes virus 6 (HHV-6) in CFS patients. 

Dr. Judy Mikovits

Dr. Mikovits obtained her Ph.D. in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology from George Washington University. She is Research Director at the Whittemore Peterson Nevada CFS centre for Neuro-Immune disorders and has co-authored over 40 peer reviewed publications that address fundamental issues of viral pathogenesis, hematopoiesis and cytokine biology.


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