Rituximabs Smacks NK Cells in ME/CFS


Founder of Health Rising and Phoenix Rising
Staff member
Boy is this interesting

Gradisnuk-Staines group in Australia is reporting the Rituximab is whacking the already whacked out NK cells in ME/CFS patients. It appears that the group tracked NK cell functioning in patients given the drug and found that it significantly worsened.

At one time it was thought that Rituximab might be aiding NK cell functioning I believe.


Reports that a drug used to treat autoimmune diseases and cancer could also treat Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) have been refuted by a new Griffith University study.

To be published in BMC Pharmacology and Toxicology, the study by Griffith’s National Centre for Neuroimmunology and Emerging Diseases(NCNED) concluded that the use of Rituximab in CFS patients could incur problems with their immune cells and is not beneficial as a potential treatment.

The Natural Killer (NK) cells have vital functions in fighting viruses, bacteria and tumours.

“We found that these functions were significantly impaired when exposed to Rituximab in CFS patients,” says Scientific Co-Director of NCNED, Professor Sonya Marshall-Gradisnik.​
It makes the big study results all the more interesting. Did some people actually get worse? There was little evidence of that before but this was a much bigger trial.

I wonder if it's possible that while NK cells are impaired but that impairment doesn't necessarily influence. I say that because I've known people who's NK cell functioning has zoomed up who saw no change in their symptoms.

The Griffiths group has focused a lot of energy on NK cells.

The results of the Rituximab trial should be out any time I believe. It's possible that the drug did help a significant subset of patients but not enough for the results to be statistically significant.

Get Our Free ME/CFS and FM Blog!

New Threads

Forum Tips

Support Our Work



Shopping on Amazon.com For HR

Latest Resources