Two Studies Capture the Brain Drain in Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CFS)

Cort

Founder of Health Rising and Phoenix Rising
Staff member
Short Report

"The spontaneous brain electrical activities in CFS patients were significantly reduced". Wu T et. al

Two recent studies, suggest that brain functioning is a well....a bit hampered in chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS). That's no surprise, of course, to most people who feel their brains are working a lot more sluggishly than they used to. Various cognitive deficits including slowed information processing, reduced working memory and problems with executive functioning have been found.

[fright]
Memory-Loss-4352.jpg
[/fright]That's good, but there's something very different about finding physical evidence of a "tired brain" in ME/CFS. That's what these two studies did.

One by the Zinn's - who were formerly affiliated with Dr. Montoya at Stanford but are now working with Lenny Jason in Chicago - found reduced connectivity across large parts of the brain. Every network tested was found to be deficient. The parts of the brain that are supposed to communicate with each other weren't getting the message across very well. The Zinn's called the reduction "Intrinsic functional hypoconnectivity". No wonder it's so hard to think...

The other study by a Chinese group found significantly reduced brain electrical activities. They concluded that their brains "stayed in an inhibitory" state. Their findings highlighted the right frontal and left occipital regions.

It's encouraging to see Eastern and Western researchers come to similar conclusions by looking at different facets of the brain.

The two studies appeared to echo the Zinn's conclusions at the Stanford Symposium some years ago that ‘a global expression of CNS hypoactivaton was found in CFS”. The Zinn's also suggested that a "limbic encephalitis" was present at the Symposium. My guess is that the effort often needed to think in ME/CFS comes from the struggle to overcome the inhibited state the brain is place in.

The Zinn's Stanford Presentation was the most impressive of the bunch for me. It's great to see them back in the saddle.

....More to Come Later

_________________________________

Appl Psychophysiol Biofeedback. 2016 Feb 11. [Epub ahead of print] Intrinsic Functional Hypoconnectivity in Core Neurocognitive Networks Suggests Central Nervous System Pathology in Patients with Myalgic Encephalomyelitis: A Pilot Study.
Zinn ML1, Zinn MA2, Jason LA2.
Author information

  • 1Department of Community Psychology, Center for Community Research, DePaul University, Chicago, IL, 60614, USA. mzinn1@depaul.edu.
  • 2Department of Community Psychology, Center for Community Research, DePaul University, Chicago, IL, 60614, USA.
Abstract

Exact low resolution electromagnetic tomography (eLORETA) was recorded from nineteen EEG channels in nine patients with myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME) and 9 healthy controls to assess current source density and functional connectivity, a physiological measure of similarity between pairs of distributed regions of interest, between groups. Current source density and functional connectivity were measured using eLORETA software.

We found significantly decreased eLORETA source analysis oscillations in the occipital, parietal, posterior cingulate, and posterior temporal lobes in Alpha and Alpha-2. For connectivity analysis, we assessed functional connectivity within Menon triple network model of neuropathology. We found support for all three networks of the triple network model, namely the central executive network (CEN), salience network (SN), and the default mode network (DMN) indicating hypo-connectivity in the Delta, Alpha, and Alpha-2 frequency bands in patients with ME compared to controls.

In addition to the current source density resting state dysfunction in the occipital, parietal, posterior temporal and posterior cingulate, the disrupted connectivity of the CEN, SN, and DMN appears to be involved in cognitive impairment for patients with ME. This research suggests that disruptions in these regions and networks could be a neurobiological feature of the disorder, representing underlying neural dysfunction.

___________________________

Neuropsychiatr Dis Treat. 2016 Jan 28;12:241-9. doi: 10.2147/NDT.S92911. eCollection 2016.Electroencephalogram characteristics in patients with chronic fatigue syndrome.
Wu T1, Qi X1, Su Y2, Teng J1, Xu X1
Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To explore the electroencephalogram (EEG) characteristics in patients with chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) using brain electrical activity mapping (BEAM) and EEG nonlinear dynamical analysis.
METHODS:

Forty-seven outpatients were selected over a 3-month period and divided into an observation group (24 outpatients) and a control group (23 outpatients) by using the non-probability sampling method. All the patients were given a routine EEG. The BEAM and the correlation dimension changes were analyzed to characterize the EEG features.
RESULTS:

1) BEAM results indicated that the energy values of δ, θ, and α1 waves significantly increased in the observation group, compared with the control group (P<0.05, P<0.01, respectively), which suggests that the brain electrical activities in CFS patients were significantly reduced and stayed in an inhibitory state; 2) the increase of δ, θ, and α1 energy values in the right frontal and left occipital regions was more significant than other encephalic regions in CFS patients, indicating the region-specific encephalic distribution; 3) the correlation dimension in the observation group was significantly lower than the control group, suggesting decreased EEG complexity in CFS patients.
CONCLUSION:

The spontaneous brain electrical activities in CFS patients were significantly reduced. The abnormal changes in the cerebral functions were localized at the right frontal and left occipital regions in CFS patients.
 
Last edited:

Thom

Member
Have the Zinn's or anyone else leading these studies read any of Jay Goldstein's books from the early 90s and 2000s? I'm referring specifically to The Limbic Hypothesis, Betrayal By The Brain and Tuning The Brain?

In these works he sets out the mechanisms for both reduced cerebral blood flow in SPECT scans as well as defining and inventing the Limbic hypothesis of ME/CFS and all the issues surrounding neural network disregulation.

If they haven't read these books I highly suggest they do :)
 

Cort

Founder of Health Rising and Phoenix Rising
Staff member
Have the Zinn's or anyone else leading these studies read any of Jay Goldstein's books from the early 90s and 2000s? I'm referring specifically to The Limbic Hypothesis, Betrayal By The Brain and Tuning The Brain?

In these works he sets out the mechanisms for both reduced cerebral blood flow in SPECT scans as well as defining and inventing the Limbic hypothesis of ME/CFS and all the issues surrounding neural network disregulation.

If they haven't read these books I highly suggest they do :)
I don't know but I'm in conversation with Marcie and she is a bundle of information. I will ask her.
 

Get Our Free ME/CFS and FM Blog!



New Threads

Forum Tips

Support Our Work

DO IT MONTHLY

HEALTH RISING IS NOT A 501 (c) 3 NON-PROFIT

Latest Resources

Top