Research Day Talk The Charcot Project

Prof Julian Gold (Prof G Down Under) unveils the Charcot Project a trial aiming to suppress a virus (or two) in MS

A mad idea or is it the potential cure?

This is not arm chair science that I like to criticise  this is getting off your butt and doing something about your ideas

About the author



  • Very interesting, I'm a big fan of the 'hand me downs' argument. I believe that this accounts for a lot more of people's ailments than is given credit for in the medical world, from baldness, eyesight, risk of cancer, stroke , heart disease, mebtal problems etc etc, even gait and dare I say vascular issues, as can easily be evidenced with varicose veins.

    How many folks do you see walk like their Mother or Father ?,
    I appreciate the nature / nurture and lifestyle arguments, but I still think the pre disposition to certain conditions is woefully under estimated and if this was looked at, at a much younger age then things may well improve.
    Most enjoyable presentation, bit of a kick in the teeth with the bias toward RRMS again, but I suppose we can't have everything.
    btw Not sure the clean shaven look is doing it for Rolf Harris 🙂

    Regards as always.

  • Jesus Christ! That bleeding bell is such a rude gesture. He got belled three times, yet what he was saying is hugely interesting. I feel like I have learnt so much from this video. Dr. Gold is such a brilliant conveyer of information. Hugely impressed.

    As I don't have a science background, please tell me if I've got this right:

    * Of all the genetic information we inherit from our moms and dads, we only actually use 3% of it in order to make ourselves?

    * Of that slim 3% of genetic data we have inherited from mom and dad, 8% is comprised of retroviruses?

    Please fill me in because this is a beguiling subject.

    • I didn't get that. I got 3+8%ie 11% per cent of the human genome is made up of passed on genetic information and HERVs. Wonder what's in the other 89%?

    • The genetic code is made up of pairs of adenine (A), thymine (T) and cytosine (C), guanine (G). So the total genetic code contains a sequence of these letter. The genes are coded by regions called exons which makes up the 3%. In between these exons are introns. Originally it was thought that the rest was genetic junk but it is not that simple. There are only about 30,000 genes. Before the genome was sequenced it was predicted that there would be 100s of thousands genes. So this 30,000 is used in many subtle different ways and the genetic junk influences this. When a gene is turned into a protein the introns are spliced out of the DNA to for the RNA. Having exons like this allows you to make different forms of the protein by alternatively splicing in or out of the exons. Some genes have one coding exon and others may have twenty or more. There are over six different forms of myelin basic protein due to this process. Upstream of each coding gene is the promoter. This contains elements that determine when the gene will be turned on to make protein. Every cell has the genetic code to make up the individual but it does only certain things so a hair cell produces hair and tooth cell produces a tooth. Other bits of the junk control how much of a protein will be made. We will understand more and more as time goes by. Apparently the Puffer fish fugu has little in terms of non-coding genetic junk, but the clover flower has loads.

    • I must be the only one here who actually liked the bell – it was not too loud and you used it last year as well so no big deal. But if you want to change that next year maybe a big electronic clock could be used. I like Prof Gold – he speaks with such dedication in his voice.

  • I presume retrovirals don't have the same problems as antibiotics ie the bacteria mutate and become immune to the antibiotic

    • Viruses want to survive, if they can they will also try to avoid drug killing. HIV is very very variable. This was one of the reasons why with the Montanginer and Gallow feud over the claim to first find the AIDS virus. The codes were identical. It was shared glory to start. But they did not know at that time that that sequence of the virus from two different people is usually different so how could you get the same sequence from someone in France and someone from the USA? Answer scientific misconduct?

    • It was the same sequence because it was the same person, because the sample in France was shipped to France by an American, who took a sample from that same person.

  • Any chance you could group all the links to the videos from the Research Day together (including the various Question Time ones) and put them all on a single page under a separate header tab? This would be particularly useful for people coming to the blog in the future, rather than doing what I'm doing (or maybe I'm just not doing it right!?) which is scrolling through the archives…. which takes forever!

    • The BartsMail logo pops up when you view a video on YouTube. Clock on the logo and all the posted videos for research day and Question Time are there.

  • Any update on this trial? There is something similar going on in Australia I think,where a patient with SPMS was treated for ebv.
    Has this trial got any positive results ?

By MouseDoctor



Recent Posts

Recent Comments