GcMAF studies presented at IACFS/ME meetings in Ottawa
At he IACFS/ME meetings in Ottawa, Canada in September, 2011, three studies on GcMAF therapy in CFS cases were presented by Kenny DeMeirleir MD, PhD out of Belgium and by Paul R. Cheney MD, PhD out of NC. GcMAF is a partially deglycosylated vitamin-D binding protein also know as Gc protein. The functional change in the Gc protein caused by serial deglycosylation is known as GcMAF or Gc Macrophage Activating Factor. GcMAF is made naturely in the body under certain conditions of immune activation but can also be made outside the body by chemical or laboratory means and by the use of certain probiotics in a Yogurt-like mixture in your own kitchen. GcMAF is extremely potent and will at very low concentrations activate, regulate and expand macrophages which are the central processing unit of the immune system and capable of modulating and controling both the innate and cognate immune systems.
Three GcMAF studies presented in Ottawa showed improvement in CFS symptoms using a similar patient-centered assessment instrument. Dr. DeMeirleir, using an injectable (IV or SQ) chemically derived GcMAF given at 100 ng on a weekly basis, showed at 63% response rate (68/108) over 5-40 weeks of therapy. Dr. Cheney used a similarly manufactured chemical GcMAF in 19 patients treated at 100 ng every 5 days over 8 weeks by SL route but he also used, in a separate study, a novel probiotic-based GcMAF given by oral daily route (MAF 314) developed by Prof’s Ruggiero and Pacini out of Florence, Italy. The SL chemical GcMAF demonstrated a response rate of 79% (15/19) over at least 8 weeks while the probiotic-based oral GcMAF (MAF 314) demonstrated a 76% (16/21) response rate over only 28 days. Given the lower numbers and shorter time frames in Dr. Cheney’s two studies, there was likely no significant difference between the three studies in terms of overall response rate in CFS patients. However, there appeared to be differences in the chemical GcMAF response rate that depended on the patient’s vitamin-D VDR polymorphisms that was not seen in the probiotic GcMAF (MAF 314) and positive response rates were generally seen much quicker in the probiotic GcMAF (MAF 314). There were mild to moderate side effects seen in all three studies and generally responded to dose reduction as well as other measures. GcMAF, given by a number of different routes, appears to be an effective therapy for well defined CFS patients.