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.
New plant-derived oral drug can prevent progression of multiple sclerosis

New plant-derived oral drug can prevent progression of multiple sclerosis

An international research team has demonstrated that a new plant-derived drug can block the progression of multiple sclerosis (MS). [More]
Zika virus may be linked to autoimmune disorder that attacks the brain's myelin

Zika virus may be linked to autoimmune disorder that attacks the brain's myelin

The Zika virus may be associated with an autoimmune disorder that attacks the brain's myelin similar to multiple sclerosis, according to a small study that is being released today and will be presented at the American Academy of Neurology's 68th Annual Meeting in Vancouver, Canada, April 15 to 21, 2016. [More]
Taking epilepsy drug during pregnancy may not increase risk of birth defects

Taking epilepsy drug during pregnancy may not increase risk of birth defects

Babies born to pregnant women taking the epilepsy drug lamotrigine may not be at an increased risk of birth defects, such as cleft lip, cleft palate or clubfoot, according to a study published in the April 6, 2016, online issue of Neurology, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology. [More]
Right side of the brain reorganizes itself after stroke to help recover speech-motor functions

Right side of the brain reorganizes itself after stroke to help recover speech-motor functions

New research suggests that looking at structures in the right side of the brain may help predict who will better recover from language problems after a stroke, according to a study published in Neurology, a medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology. [More]
High out-of-pocket costs linked to lower use of specialty drugs

High out-of-pocket costs linked to lower use of specialty drugs

"Specialty drugs" have become important treatment options for many serious and chronic diseases, and in some conditions like cancer they represent the only chance for long-term survival. [More]
Oregon's new birth control law could improve access to all forms of contraception

Oregon's new birth control law could improve access to all forms of contraception

Researchers at Oregon Health & Science University, University of Minnesota School of Public Health and George Mason University applaud Oregon's new birth control law which allows women age 18 or older to obtain some methods of hormonal contraception directly from pharmacies, without having to visit a prescribing clinician, yet note how the law could go even further to improve access to all forms of contraception, according to a viewpoint article published in the Journal of the American Medical Association today. [More]
Oral administration of cyclotide may improve symptoms of multiple sclerosis

Oral administration of cyclotide may improve symptoms of multiple sclerosis

MedUni Vienna has made a crucial development in the treatment of Multiple Sclerosis (MS): Together with his team and the research group led by Gernot Schabbauer, international partners from Australia, Germany and Sweden, Christian Gruber, Chief Researcher at the Center for Physiology and Pharmacology has demonstrated in an animal model that, following treatment with a specially synthesized plant peptide (cyclotide), there is no further progression of the usual clinical signs of multiple sclerosis. [More]
Simple tips to help parents and children lead a healthy life

Simple tips to help parents and children lead a healthy life

Obesity is almost at epidemic proportions; it has more than doubled in children and tripled in adolescents in the past 30 years nationwide. Rosa Cataldo, DO, MPH, Director of the Healthy Weight & Wellness Center at Stony Brook Children's Hospital, says that the most effective approach to addressing weight loss in children are lifestyle-based modifications that involve parents. [More]
Exercise slows down cognitive decline in older adults

Exercise slows down cognitive decline in older adults

Exercise in older people is associated with a slower rate of decline in thinking skills that occurs with aging. People who reported light to no exercise experienced a decline equal to 10 more years of aging as compared to people who reported moderate to intense exercise, according to a population-based observational study published in the March 23, 2016, online issue of Neurology, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology. [More]
Retinal thickness points to disability worsening in MS patients

Retinal thickness points to disability worsening in MS patients

The thickness of the peripapillary retinal nerve fibre layer (pRNFL) may help to predict worsening disability in patients with multiple sclerosis (MS), optical coherence tomography (OCT) ... [More]
Researchers use DNA sequencing technology to identify gene variants that affect susceptibility to SLE

Researchers use DNA sequencing technology to identify gene variants that affect susceptibility to SLE

Demonstrating the potential of precision medicine, an international study based at UT Southwestern Medical Center used next-generation DNA sequencing technology to identify more than 1,000 gene variants that affect susceptibility to systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). [More]
New scaffold technology could someday help treat Parkinson's disease, other brain-related conditions

New scaffold technology could someday help treat Parkinson's disease, other brain-related conditions

Scientists at Rutgers and Stanford universities have created a new technology that could someday help treat Parkinson's disease and other devastating brain-related conditions that affect millions of people. [More]
Psoriasis patients experience widespread bone loss

Psoriasis patients experience widespread bone loss

Researchers from the Genes, Development and Disease Group, headed by Erwin Wagner at the Spanish National Cancer Research Centre have discovered that psoriasis patients experience a widespread bone loss as a result of the disease. [More]
Excess comorbidity flagged in MS patients

Excess comorbidity flagged in MS patients

Patients with multiple sclerosis have more comorbidities than would be expected for their age, even at the time of diagnosis, say researchers. [More]
Merck reports record results for 2015

Merck reports record results for 2015

Merck, a leading science and technology company, reported record results for 2015, emerging stronger from the transformation process that started in 2007. Net sales and EBITDA pre exceptionals were higher than ever before in Merck’s history of nearly 350 years. [More]
People newly diagnosed with multiple sclerosis share risk factors of other chronic illnesses

People newly diagnosed with multiple sclerosis share risk factors of other chronic illnesses

People newly diagnosed with multiple sclerosis may often have other chronic health conditions as well, according to a study published in the March 9, 2016 online issue of Neurology®, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology. [More]

Added benefit of multiple sclerosis drug fingolimod not proven, says IQWiG

Since its approval in 2011, the multiple sclerosis drug fingolimod (Gilenya) has already undergone three early benefit assessments, all of which were mainly based on the approval study TRANSFORMS. After a new modification of the therapeutic indication by the regulatory authorities, the Federal Joint Committee again commissioned the German Institute for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care to examine the added benefit of the drug in accordance with the Act on the Reform of the Market for Medicinal Products. [More]
Metabolic syndrome treatment benefits MS patients

Metabolic syndrome treatment benefits MS patients

Oral antidiabetic medications have beneficial anti-inflammatory effects in patients with multiple sclerosis and metabolic syndrome, providing support for a link between metabolism and autoimmunity, researchers report. [More]
Novel mechanism identified to protect the brain from many neurodegenerative conditions

Novel mechanism identified to protect the brain from many neurodegenerative conditions

Scientists at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine have identified a novel mechanism that could be used to protect the brain from damage due to stroke and a variety of neurodegenerative conditions, including sporadic Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, Alzheimer's disease, and Parkinson's disease. [More]
Vitamin D deficiency during pregnancy linked to MS risk

Vitamin D deficiency during pregnancy linked to MS risk

Children born to mothers deficient in vitamin D during early pregnancy have an increased risk of developing multiple sclerosis as adults, researchers report. [More]
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