Women With MS More Likely to Have Gene MutationJan 5, 2011 -- New research may help explain why multiple sclerosis rates have risen sharply in the U.S. and some other countries among women, while rates appear stable in men.
The study could also broaden understanding of how environmental influences alter genes to cause a wide range of diseases.
The causes of multiple sclerosis (MS) are not well understood, but experts have long suspected that environmental factors trigger the disease in people who are genetically susceptible.
In the newly published study, researchers found that women with MS were more likely than men with MS to have a specific genetic mutation that has been linked to the disease.
Women were also more likely to pass the mutation to their daughters than their sons and more likely to share the MS-susceptibility gene with more distant female family members. read more