Chronic fatigue syndrome: Characteristics and possible causes for its pathogenesis

Nicola Bassi, Daniela Amital, Howard Amital, Andrea Doria, Yehuda Shoenfeld*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Chronic fatigue syndrome is a heterogeneous disorder with unknown pathogenesis and etiology, characterized by disabling fatigue, difficulty in concentration and memory, and concomitant skeletal and muscular pain. Several mechanisms have been suggested to play a role in CFS, such as excessive oxidative stress following exertion, immune imbalance characterized by decreased natural killer cell and macrophage activity, immunoglobulin G subclass deficiencies (IgG1, IgG3) and decreased serum concentrations of complement component. Autoantibodies were also suggested as a possible factor in the pathogenesis of CFS. Recent studies indicate that anti-serotonin, anti-microtubule-associated protein 2 and anti-muscarinic cholinergic receptor 1 may play a role in the pathogenesis of CFS. It has been demonstrated that impairment in vasoactive neuropeptide metabolism may explain the symptoms of CFS.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)79-82
Number of pages4
JournalIsrael Medical Association Journal
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2008


  • Chronic fatigue syndrome
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Gulf War syndrome
  • Neuropeptides
  • Sjögren's syndrome
  • Vasoactive neuropeptides


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