Turning off the immune response

If MS is an autoimmune disease then the ultimate way forward is to specifically shut down the parts of the immune system causing the disease….This is the Holy Grail of Autoimmunity read here for some approaches in the offing, some for MS.
Its amazing how Journals (i.e. in this case Nature) can be high- jacked for advertising companies and their desire for cash…..
…….so too can blog sites (Ha, Ha but Larry is a mate and it is Diabetes). To some it is news, but it is really a request for support….so if there are any sugar daddies out there…you know where we are:-)

Anyway I posted this, because there is interest in antigen-specific therapies (See Top posts of the month). So there is hope for the future. 

I wish they would consider bringing a transient depletion into their protocols, I think it may make the difference between success and being the main course for Thanksgiving. However I, suspect there may be a few Turkeys in the list..let’s hope not. 

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  • This T cell brigade has no chance against the immunosuppressive culture that has dominated MS therapies. Although tolerance induction would be a true cure, it would have to happen instantly to compete with agents that broadly wipe out your immune cells. And how does tolerance induction kill EBV, which as we have learned from this blog, is the direct cause of damage in ms?

  • EBV as a cause of damage is a hypothesis that can crash and burn it maybe that EBV is the trigger of autoimmunity but does not drive it. However this is an interesting point on how the T cell brigade get their ideas off the table. Some treatments may be no more than an immunosuppressive agents and not tolerisers and one could and should ask about placebo control for RRMS is it ethical.

  • What if MS was not an auto-immune disease? You might not believe that, and many studies are demonstrating an involvement of the immune system (even if none of them found a way to stop the progression of MS). And it is true that there are a lot of statistically well built studies who show that immunosuppressive drugs can diminish the rate of relapse and might slow down the progression of the disease. Yet none of them is able to fully stop MS by rebooting the immune system. Plus having an healthy immune system could be of use, to avoid opportunistic infections or new auto-immune problems that can kill you. So my answer would be yes there is an involvement but there is another obvious target that maybe less hazardous.

    Oligodendrocytes could be misfunctioning in MS, they might not do their job properly in myelinating axons or taking care of neurons. They might be the bad guy or the cripple guy in the story. Because of that the immune system, doing his normal job, get rid of them. I trust more new therapies fostering the astrocytic system and myelination in general than immunosuppressive drugs. It seems less dangerous to help a cell or strengthen it rather than kill one.

    What do you think?

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