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  • Meeting abstract
  • Open Access

XMRV infection in human diseases

  • 1Email author,
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Retrovirology20118 (Suppl 1) :A238

  • Published:


  • Prostate Cancer
  • Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
  • Human Prostate
  • Prostate Cancer Patient
  • Human Prostate Cancer

The novel gammaretrovirus xenotropic murine leukemia virus-related virus (XMRV) was identified in human prostate cancer tissue in 2006, confirmed in 2009 and later linked to a second human condition chronic fatigue syndrome, CFS. These investigations, all carried out in the US, have not been reproduced in Europe or in China.

We found no evidence for XMRV infection in CFS. Moreover, we failed to find evidence of XMRV infection in UK prostate cancer patients and in prostate cancer tissue taken from patients in India, Korea, Thailand and Japan, or in cancers other than that of the prostate.

Our UK CFS patients were consistently XMRV-free. We did, however, generate false-positive results from prostate cancer patient tissue, despite the fact that the no-template controls in our PCR were consistently negative and the PCR for murine mitochondrial DNA was often also negative.

Sources of this contamination will be discussed in our presentation.

Authors’ Affiliations

Section of Infectious Diseases, Jefferiss Research Trust Laboratories, Imperial College London, London, W2 1PG, UK
Department of Histopathology, Imperial College London, London, W2 1PG, UK
Department of Urology, Imperial College Healthcare Trust, London, W2 1PG, UK
Department of Urology, College of Medicine, Personalised Tumor Engineering Research Centre, Chungbuk National University, Chungbuk, 361-763, Korea
Department of Pathology, Faculty of Medicine, Siriraj Hospital, Mahidol University, Bangkok, 10700, Thailand
Vedanayagam Hospital, RS Puram, Coimbatore, -641002, India
Department of Urology, Jikei University, School of Medicine 3-25-8, Nishi-Shinbashi, Minato-ku, Tokyo, Japan
Centre for Pathology, Hammersmith Hospital Campus, Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust, London, UK


© Erlwein et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. 2011

This article is published under license to BioMed Central Ltd. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.