For those who are wondering at the results and their implications, Naviaux’s study in a nutshell states that the cells of ME patients are in a sort of protective hibernation, limiting their consumption of resources and engaging in a hypometabolic state as a response to infection or other stressors. By examining patients’ metabolites in detail, it was found that this degree of protective hibernation correlates directly to clinical severity.
Naviaux also posits that cells in ME/CFS are cells under enormous stress, for which they create a series of defenses, metaphorically installing a superior lock and alarm system and hiding all the valuables. However, some pathogens know the code to get in, and when the resources are hidden, the host can’t use them, either. Both of these aspects of this mode of cellular defense have profound implications for symptomology.