CategoryCauses

#ECTRIMS2021: EBV as a therapeutic target; another Lazarus effect?

Barts-MS rose-tinted-odometer: ★★★★★★ (6-stars calls for a bright orange Thursday, #FFA500) As you are aware by now I  am one of the people in the field of MS who thinks EBV is the cause of MS. My position is essentially based on epidemiological evidence and causal inference. At the moment I honestly don’t know how EBV causes MS, but one hypothesis is that ongoing EBV infection in the CNS or...

Can you predict the next relapse? K-FLC in MS

I was recently in Vienna hearing about a relatively new biomarker, the kappa (k)-free light chains and their value in the diagnosis of MS. To date, biologically the oligoclonal bands in the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) remain the gold standard for diagnosing MS. Oligoclonal bands in the CSF (also termed intrathecal restriction) represent the production of antibodies in the CNS that is unique to...

Multiple Sclerosis and being a woman

MS is commoner in women than men. In fact the incidence of MS is increasing all over the world but this seems to be preferentially in women. Now this new publication looking at cases and controls (through a process of enrichment from a large group of women with MS) is suggesting that there are marginal differences in non-natural menopause in MS females, with more cases observed in MS. Moreover...

Is the real MS standing up?

You want some non-COVID stuff reported…ProfG has been doing this on his MS-selfie site and we can only report what people are publishing, so maybe this week we can do the “Real MS” for a change One school of thought thinks that MS starts in the central nervous system and then lesions form, this is the “inside-out” brigade, in this study they use scans from trials and...

Is MS the new paraneoplastic disorder?

The most interesting of scientific discoveries are sometimes hidden in the most obscure of places. In this case an open access journal that I’d never heard of before, and a discussion from the authors that is close but no cigar. The authors report of a 39-year-old woman who presented with a demyelinating brain lesion, but on further search was found to also have a thymoma (a thyroid cancer)...

MS and other neurological disorders in India

This freely accessible article published in Lancet Global Health is the most comprehensive data on the prevalence of neurological disorders across India to date. Around 18% of the worlds population live in India and like other nations they also have a significant level of morbidity related to those with neurological disorders. But, owing to a lack of resources as well as cultural taboos, it has...

Gut instinct, the gut microbial changes in MS

It’s probably not the first time that you’ve heard about gut microbes and MS. Particularly, the role that they may play in the development and regulation of MS. Almost every study published in the literature has demonstrated differences in the gut microbiome in MS patients vs. healthy controls with the possibility that interventions on diet and the use of probiotics may have a...

Neurofilaments have it – the story behind smouldering MS

Recently, smouldering MS or chronically active MS lesions have become an entirely new entity in disease progression. They are characterized by a rim of activated microglia/macrophages in both RRMS and progressive MS and are linked to more aggressive disease. These lesions are visible on a type of MRI called susceptibility-based imaging and individuals with MS can have 0, 1-3, or ≥4 of these...

Now a virus that isn’t associated with MS

Cytomegalovirus (CMV) is related to the herpes virus that causes cold sores and chick pox. It gets its name from making cells swell/go big. Like EBV Once you have the virus, it stays in your body for the rest of your life. Your immune system usually controls the virus and most people do not realise they have it. But CMV can cause serious health problems in some babies who get the virus before...

Pets and MS, is there a link?

Over the years I have been asked about just about everything and anything that can cause MS. But, this is a new one on me. Do pets cause MS? Specifically, is childhood pet ownership or exposure linked to the development of MS. The concept is not as far fetched as it may initially appear. For instance, early on there were concerns over canine viruses causing MS. Pet ownership is common in the...

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