Multiple Sclerosis News and Research RSS Feed - Multiple Sclerosis News and Research

Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a severe autoimmune disease of the central nervous system that affects the brain and spinal cord, causing problems with muscle movement, balance and vision.

In MS, the protein coating called myelin, which protects nerves and helps electrical signals travel from the brain to the rest of the body, is damaged. The immune system, which usually fights infection, mistakes myelin for a foreign body and attacks it, stripping it from around the nerves. Exactly what causes this abnormal immune response is unclear, but research suggests a combination of both genetic and environmental factors.

The damaged myelin disrupts the transfer of nerve signals which may slow down, become distorted or stop altogether. This can cause severe symptoms ranging from vision loss through to muscle stiffness, loss of control over muscle movement, difficulties with balance and poor co-ordination.

Around 100,000 people in the UK have MS and it affects about three times as many women as men. The usual age at which diagnosis occurs is around 30, however, symptoms often first develop between the ages of 15 and 45.

Currently, there is no cure for MS but therapeutic approaches such as physiotherapy and steroid injections are used to manage the condition and ease symptoms.
Fasting-mimicking diet may help decrease multiple sclerosis symptoms

Fasting-mimicking diet may help decrease multiple sclerosis symptoms

Evidence is mounting that a diet mimicking the effects of fasting has health benefits beyond weight loss, with a new USC-led study indicating that it may reduce symptoms of multiple sclerosis. [More]
Specific immune system genes may determine how long people can live with glioblastoma

Specific immune system genes may determine how long people can live with glioblastoma

Researchers have identified a group of immune system genes that may play a role in how long people can live after developing a common type of brain cancer called glioblastoma multiforme, a tumor of the glial cells in the brain. [More]
TSRI scientists discover new method for harnessing venoms for therapeutic use

TSRI scientists discover new method for harnessing venoms for therapeutic use

There are lessons to be learned from venoms. Scorpions, snakes, snails, frogs and other creatures are thought to produce tens or even hundreds of millions of distinct venoms. These venoms have been honed to strike specific targets in the body. [More]
SBP scientists discover new regulator of immune responses

SBP scientists discover new regulator of immune responses

Research led by scientists at the Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute has identified a new regulator of immune responses. The study, published recently in Immunity, sheds new light on why T cells fail to clear chronic infections and eliminate tumors. [More]
Mitoxantrone for MS linked to colorectal cancer risk

Mitoxantrone for MS linked to colorectal cancer risk

Treatment with mitoxantrone for multiple sclerosis carries only a mildly increased risk of malignancy overall, but the risk of colorectal cancer and leukaemia is heightened, researchers have found. [More]
Researchers find genetic mutations linked to increased risk factor for PTSD

Researchers find genetic mutations linked to increased risk factor for PTSD

In the largest study of DNA samples from service members with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), researchers have identified genetic mutations that may be associated with an increased risk factor for PTSD. [More]
New collaborative research center to investigate promising aspects of mucosal immunology

New collaborative research center to investigate promising aspects of mucosal immunology

Immunology - and the idea that many diseases can best be addressed by boosting the body's own immune response - is one of the hottest areas in medical research and clinical treatment. [More]
Penn State researchers link mutation in common virus to fatal brain disease

Penn State researchers link mutation in common virus to fatal brain disease

Why people on immunosuppressant drugs for autoimmune conditions have a higher incidence of an often-fatal brain disease may be linked to a mutation in a common virus, according to researchers at Penn State College of Medicine. [More]
Taking pregabalin drug during pregnancy could lead to major birth defects

Taking pregabalin drug during pregnancy could lead to major birth defects

A drug commonly used to treat pain, epilepsy, anxiety and other brain health disorders may be associated with an increased risk of major birth defects, according to a study published in the May 18, 2016, online issue of Neurology, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology. [More]
Wyss Institute partners with ReWalk to accelerate development of wearable, soft exosuits

Wyss Institute partners with ReWalk to accelerate development of wearable, soft exosuits

The Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard University has entered into a collaboration with ReWalk Robotics Ltd., to accelerate the development of the Institute's lightweight, wearable soft exosuit technologies for assisting people with lower limb disabilities. [More]
Low levels of vitamin D in Orkney may explain reason for higher rates of multiple sclerosis

Low levels of vitamin D in Orkney may explain reason for higher rates of multiple sclerosis

Holidays abroad may hold the key to tackling Scotland's vitamin D deficiency, research suggests. [More]
Could worm infection counter IBD? An interview with Dr Loke and Dr Cadwell

Could worm infection counter IBD? An interview with Dr Loke and Dr Cadwell

The hygiene hypothesis refers to the idea that decreased exposure to certain infectious agents (because of better hygiene) is the reason why we have seen an increase in inflammatory diseases in the developed world. [More]
Study links multiple sclerosis in children to abundance of specific gut bacteria

Study links multiple sclerosis in children to abundance of specific gut bacteria

In a recent study, children with multiple sclerosis had differences in the abundance of specific gut bacteria than children without the disease. Certain types of bacteria were either more or less abundant in children with multiple sclerosis. [More]
On-treatment relapse drives disability accrual in MS patients

On-treatment relapse drives disability accrual in MS patients

Frequent relapse activity appears to be a key driver of disability accrual in patients with relapse-onset multiple sclerosis, indicates a study of patients receiving first-line injectable disease-modifying treatment. [More]

Kent researchers perform first clinical trials of bionic legs for patients

Expert clinicians and engineers at the University of Kent are carrying out the first clinical trials of robotic legs for patients [More]
New national survey reveals that asthma patients most frequently use rescue inhaler

New national survey reveals that asthma patients most frequently use rescue inhaler

In a new national survey of asthma patients, Health Union, and its new online community Asthma.net, reveals that most were satisfied with the care they received; however, the most frequently used form of treatment, at 89%, is the rescue inhaler. [More]
Mitoxantrone drug users more likely to develop colorectal cancer

Mitoxantrone drug users more likely to develop colorectal cancer

The multiple sclerosis (MS) drug mitoxantrone may be associated with an increased risk of colorectal cancer, according to a study published in the May 11, 2016, online issue of Neurology, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology. Mitoxantrone suppresses the immune system. [More]
Two statistically significant genetic variants may be linked to increased PTSD risk in veterans

Two statistically significant genetic variants may be linked to increased PTSD risk in veterans

In a massive analysis of DNA samples from more than 13,000 U.S. soldiers, scientists have identified two statistically significant genetic variants that may be associated with an increased risk of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), an often serious mental illness linked to earlier exposure to a traumatic event, such as combat and an act of violence. [More]
MNI scientists move a step forward in efforts to treat hereditary spastic paraplegia

MNI scientists move a step forward in efforts to treat hereditary spastic paraplegia

Scientists at the Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital have identified novel gene mutations that cause hereditary spastic paraplegia (HSP), a step forward in efforts to treat this debilitating disease. [More]
Scientists use non-invasive way to track rapid myelination of nerve fibers in children's brains

Scientists use non-invasive way to track rapid myelination of nerve fibers in children's brains

Much like electricity traveling down wires, nerve impulses in our brain travel along nerve fibers. And just as wires need insulation to function well, nerve fibers, too, rely on a kind of insulation called myelin, a fatty substance that protects them and increases the speed at which nerve impulses travel. [More]
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