Death receptor in myelination

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The survival and maturation of oligodendrocytes, the cells that make myelin, are important for repair in MS. 

Myelin is the fatty layer that insulates nerve fibres that is believed to the target of attack in MS.

This study shows that a protein that sits on the surface of oligodendrocytes, called the death receptor 6 (DR6), inhibits oligodendrocyte maturation. 
If there is too much DR6 on the surface of oligodendrocytes it leads to their death. 
Blocking DR6 function enhances oligodendrocyte maturation, survival and myelination in animal models of MS. 
Conclusion: These studies reveal a pivotal role for DR6 in oligodendrocyte maturation and myelination and may provide a new therapeutic target for treating MS. 
CoI: I have consulted for Biogen-Idec the company who did this research. The consulting was unrelated to this work. 

About the author

Prof G

Professor of Neurology, Barts & The London. MS & Preventive Neurology thinker, blogger, runner, vegetable gardener, husband, father, cook and wine & food lover.

2 comments

  • Another day, another target. Still no effective treatment for progressive MS.

    I suppose it creates jobs and keeps the economy ticking along.

    Anyone reading my comment must think what a miserable bunch us MS'ers are. Oh well…

  • No, they think what a miserable person you are! I am a PwMS but I am not miserable… But maybe you were joking in which case I guess you aren't really miserable 🙂

    Good news about the piece of research, though

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