Thursday, August 18, 2011

Stress does not cause Multiple Sclerosis | CCSVI Mexico
Research from Norway finds that although stress may aggravate multiple sclerosis incidents in women, it does not increase the risk of developing the disease.
Two cohorts of the Nurses’ Health Study were examined to find out if the stress of daily life or having a stressful childhood increases women’s risk of acquiring MS.
stressed woman
The Nurses’ Health Study observed 121,700 female nurses aged 30 to 55 starting in 1976, and the Nurses’ Health II study followed 116,671 female nurses aged 25 to 42 from 1989. The study’s participants rated their stress at work and at home and answered questions about any physical and sexual abuse they experienced as children and teens.
In the group one 77 women developed MS by 2005. In the group two 292 women developed the disease by 2004. Their stress levels at home and work had no effect on the risk of them developing multiple sclerosis and that remained after the researchers had adjusted results for variables such as body mass index at age 18, smoking habits, ethnicity and what latitude they were born at.
Stress from childhood physical and sexual abuse and trauma also failed to raise the risk of developing the MS, and this again stayed the same following adjustments for variables.
“This rules out stress as a major risk factor for MS,” said Trond Riise, the study’s author from the University of Bergen in Norway. “Future research can now focus on repeated and more fine-tuned measures of stress.”
The study was released Tuesday May 31 2011 in the journal Neurology.
Angeles hospital in Tijuana is part of Mexico’s largest private hospital network and offers a cutting edge multiple sclerosis therapy called CCSVI treatment.

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Wednesday, August 17, 2011

New Approach to Treat Autoimmune Disorders - Page 2 | MedIndia
Recent study offers a promising approach to treat inflammatory autoimmune disorders such as lupus, multiple sclerosis. The novel mechanism uses molecules called polymers to mop up the debris of damaged cells before the immune system becomes abnormally active.

The discovery, published Monday in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, offers a promising new approach to treat inflammatory auto-immune disorders such as lupus and multiple sclerosis, which are marked by an overactive immune response.

"Depending on the disease, cells that are damaged drive or perpetuate the immune response," said Bruce A. Sullenger, Ph.D., director of the Duke Translational Research Institute and senior author of the study. "We have shown that we can inhibit that process."

Sullenger said the idea for the new approach stems from earlier findings by Duke scientists and others that dying and diseased cells spill nucleic acids – the building blocks of life that include DNA and RNA – that then circulate at high levels in the bloodstream.

While DNA and RNA inside the cell regulate important functions such as growth and division, outside of cells in the blood, these nucleic acids serve as powerful signals to the immune system that something is amiss. Once activated, the immune system launches an attack to fight whatever caused the cell damage, whether an infection or toxic substance. Under normal circumstances, this inflammatory response eventually restores order.

Read more: New Approach to Treat Autoimmune Disorders | MedIndia
Click here to read remaining article

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Vitamin D pathway found for fighting MS
Vitamin D has been thought to play a role for battling multiple sclerosis, but scientists haven’t been sure exactly how. Researchers believe they may have discovered how the vitamin could combat the disease; potentially leading to new treatment.
Sylvia Christakos, Ph.D., of UMDNJ-New Jersey Medical School and colleagues seem to have honed in on the process that shows how vitamin D stops production of the damaging protein interleukin-17 (IL-17) that causes MS.
For the study, published in Molecular and Cellular Biology, researchers found vitamin D binds to IL-17 receptors produced by immune cells in the brain during MS. The researchers used mice with EAE - Experimental Allergic Encephalomyelitis (EAE) - a mouse model of multiple sclerosis
The research team, which included scientists from the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey and Stanford University, noted after vitamin D binds to the receptor, also blocks a protein called NFAT needed to turn on the gene. Without the gene “on”, levels of IL-17 fall.
Vitamin D also does another job by turning on a gene that produces suppressive T cells to fight destructive IL-17-production that occurs elsewhere.
According to the authors, in mouse models with EAE, vitamin D, 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D3 [1,25(OH)2D3] “diminishes paralysis and progression of the disease and reduces IL-17A-secreting CD4+ T cells in the periphery and central nervous system (CNS).”
Identification of the vitamin D pathway could lead to new treatments not only for multiple sclerosis, but for other autoimmune diseases include type 1 diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis and skin disorders. The authors concluded, “Our results describe novel mechanisms and new concepts with regard to vitamin D and the immune system and suggest therapeutic targets for the control of autoimmune diseases.”

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Friday, August 12, 2011

Friday, August 12, 2011
Breakthrough multiple sclerosis DNA study could lead to new treatments - HealthPop - CBS News click here to read article
Another study, published in the journal PLoS Genetics, found that many genes linked to MS are also found in other autoimmune diseases, like Crohn's disease, psoriasis, lupus, and Type 1 diabetes. That means if doctors can successfully treat one of these disease, they might uncover how to treat another.
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MS study casts doubt on surgical treatment (click here to go to article)
TORONTO -- A huge international study has bolstered the genetic evidence that MS has its roots in an aberrant immune system and has added to questions about the validity of a theory that obstructed neck veins are behind the progressive neurological disorder.
It comes as Ottawa and some provinces lay plans to conduct patient trials of the so-called Zamboni procedure that unblocks those veins in a bid to alleviate symptoms and possibly halt progression of the disease.
The genetics study, published in this week's issue of the journal Nature, identified 29 new genetic variants common in people with multiple sclerosis, compared to those without the disease, and confirmed 23 others previously linked to MS.
Many of those genes are critical to how the immune system functions, and some of them have also been implicated in other auto-immune disorders, including Crohn's disease, Type 1 diabetes and rheumatoid arthritis.
The findings are sure to add to the controversy over the theory by Italian vascular specialist Dr. Paolo Zamboni that narrowed neck veins -- which he's dubbed chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency, or CCSVI -- are a likely cause of MS. It's estimated that thousands of Canadian patients have flocked to clinics outside Canada, paying thousands of dollars for the procedure -- known as venous balloon angioplasty -- to open up their veins.
In Manitoba, advocates for the theorized role of CCSVI in MS shrugged off the study's findings as old news.
"We've known there's been a link between MS and the immune system forever," said Joanne Gauthier-Wiebe, who helps helm the group CCSVI Manitoba. "CCSVI (treatment) is showing a relief of symptoms... It's not a cure; everybody knows that. We're not hearing enough about the people who had significant improvements in the quality of life."
One of the most active supporters of CCSVI treatment called the researcher's comments "baseless propaganda."
"There is no doubt the immune system plays a significant role in MS," Ashton Embry wrote in a Facebook post for his organization, Direct-MS. "However, the question remains, is the immune component primary or secondary?"
Dr. John Rioux of the University of Montreal, a member of the international consortium that conducted the study, said the research was aimed at locating genetic factors underlying MS, not to look at whether or not the Zamboni procedure works.
That question can only be answered by well-designed clinical trials, he said.
Rioux said he doesn't believe there's any strong evidence suggesting blockages in neck veins are related to an immune response.
"So I think the clearest answer you can give is there's a preponderance role to play of the immune system, and although it doesn't directly ask the question related to venous blockage, it makes it less likely," Rioux said Thursday from Montreal.
With an estimated 55,000 to 75,000 Canadians affected, Canada has one of the highest rates of MS in the world.

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