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Wednesday

 

New theory on MS could lead to revolutionary treatment say scientists


































Protection: An image of the insulating layer around nerve cells

A new drug for multiple sclerosis may be on the horizon after scientists discovered how the devastating condition starts.

The devastating illness is triggered by the death of brain cells that make the vital insulation around nerve fibres, a new study has shown.

And experiments have found that a specially developed nanoparticle can guard this protective sheath – known as myelin – and prevent MS. This can happen even after the loss of the crucial brain cells.

Now the chemical is being developed for trial on human patients.

The current prevailing theory is that an event outside of the nervous system triggers MS in people with a genetic predisposition to the disease.

But the new study suggests MS can begin from the inside out, in which damage to the brain cells in the central nervous system can trigger an immune response directly.

It is hoped the new therapy will be better than current treatments with no side effects.

In the study published in Nature Neuroscience, the scientists told how they created the nanoparticles which warded off the condition in laboratory mice.

Professor Stephen Miller, of Northwestern University, Chicago, said: “We are encouraged that immune tolerance induced with nanoparticles could stop disease progression in a model of chronic MS as efficiently as it can in progressive remitting models of MS.”

MS is the most common disabling neurological condition, with 50 people in Britain diagnosed each week, usually in their 20s or 30s.

It is estimated there are currently around 100,000 people with MS in the UK, and 2.5 million worldwide.

Of those with long standing disease, up to three fifths have progressive MS.

The condition, which affects twice as many women as men, causes loss of mobility, sight problems, tiredness and excruciating pain.

The disease either become progressively worse with age - or strikes in brutal, periodic relapses - with many people left relying on wheelchairs.

Story Source: The above story is based on materials provided by MIRROR
Note: Materials may be edited for content and length


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