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Timothy L. Vollmer, MD
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Department of Neurology
University of Colorado Health Sciences Center
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Friday

 
CONTROL OF SMALL PROTEIN MAY FIGHT MYELIN DAMAGE IN MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS
Endothelin-1 has long been recognized as a vasoconstrictor, which means it causes the muscle layer in the blood vessels to contract. This protein also has an ability to affect the central nervous system.


A research team has found that a small protein called endothelin-1 (ET-1) has the potential to be a player in the fight against myelin damage that occurs in people who have multiple sclerosis (MS). Part of that fight appears to the protein's role in preventing the repair of brain cells affected by the disease.

 Remyelination, or the repair of the fatty sheath that protects axons (nerve cell fibers) in the brain, is a major goal of MS treatment, yet a successful approach has not yet been found. Now some promise is being shown by understanding the activity of ET-1, according to Vittorio Gallo, PhD, director of the Center for Neuroscience Research at Children’s National Health System, and his team.

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