Are we closer to a cure for Multiple Sclerosis (MS)? Too early to tell but researchers are making headway in the treatment.
This week Scientists have announced they found 29 new genetic variants linked to (MS) and the findings should help drug makers focus treatment on precise areas of the immune system.
Following is an excerpt from the article in News Daily: Scientists unravel genetic clues to multiple sclerosis by Kate Kelland
….. Alastair Compston of Cambridge University, who co-led the study “It is now clear that multiple sclerosis is primarily an immunological disease. This is the way to nail this disease and get on top of it.”
Multiple sclerosis is one of the most common neurological conditions among young adults, affecting around 2.5 million people worldwide.
It occurs when the protective coating, known as the myelin sheath, around nerve fibres in the brain and spinal cord begins to break down, slowing the brain’s communication with the rest of the body. In other words, the affected pathways — responsible for everyday activities such as seeing, walking, feeling, thinking and controlling the bowel and bladder — lose the ability to function properly and are eventually destroyed.
…. researchers found that many of the genes linked to MS are also linked to other autoimmune diseases such as Crohn’s disease and Type 1 diabetes. This also points to potential new uses for existing drugs in development, they said.
For their study, Compston and Peter Donnelly of Oxford University worked with some 250 other researchers and studied the DNA from 9,772 people with multiple sclerosis and compared it with a control group of more than 17,300 healthy people.
Their analysis confirmed 23 previously known genetic links and identified another 29 new genetic variants.
Through previous research they have found a link between Vitamin D deficiency and an increased risk of MS. Many genes play a role in the immune system; they also found 2 involved in the metabolism of Vitamin D.
Canada has one of the highest, if not the highest rates of MS is the world. It is also a country which has 4 seasons including very cold winters. Vitamin D nicknamed the Sunshine vitamin because you get vitamin D from the sun. With Canada’s climate people don’t get a sufficient dose of sunshine. Unless they supplement with vitamins they will most likely be deficient.
If you ever put the symptoms of MS and Fibromyalgia side by side, they are a lot similar. So much that some doctors rule out MS. I personally find it unnerving when I get a flair-up and it is something new that I haven’t experienced before and no where to be found under Fibromyalgia. However, what do I see under MS? Yes, that symptom. It is not until years later (yes years) was it listed under Fibromyalgia.
The symptom was Dysarthria, or difficulty speaking, I had difficulty annunciating some words. When I was first diagnosed back in 2006, this would happen when I was under stress. It hasn’t happened for years until last month. I didn’t even notice it a friend did and so did my son. That little doubt factor is still sitting there, in the back corner of my brain. I keep up to date on the Fibromyalgia information so I have not worries. When I miss something important is when that doubt will be knocking at the back door.
To read the whole article please go here
Have a Great Day!!
- Multiple sclerosis genetic clues found (cbc.ca)
- Researchers double number of genes associated with multiple sclerosis (medicalxpress.com)
- Number of genes associated with MS doubled (thehandiestone.typepad.com)