CategoryLab Lessons

Do you want a cure?

MSers want a cure. However, even if we have an MS cure in hand we may not prevent or reverse progressive disease. How can this be? Focal inflammation damages nerves in two ways. It can shred and destroy nerve fibres as part of the initial inflammatory stage (acute neurodegeneration) or it can damage nerves and leave them functioning, but the resulting damage primes them to die off in the future;...

Chronic lesion activity in MS as seen on MRI

If you’d asked an year ago on whether I though MRI had a role beyond diagnosis in MS? My answer would have been an emphatic ‘NO’. The Achilles heel of MRI has always been the difficulty of standardizing scanning techniques to a large scale population level and adapting these accurately to work seamlessly during the day-to-day shortcomings of clinical imaging facilities within...

Guest post: Multiple Sclerosis from a researcher’s perspective

Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is an incurable neurological disorder that is characterized by the loss of specialized functional cells in our brain. Oligodendrocytes are one of these specialized cell types that play an important role in MS. They produce a fatty substance called myelin, which is produced in large sheaths that are tightly wrapped around our nerve cells. Myelin is essential for providing...

Envy – will we ever be in a position to prevent MS?

On the 5th August, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) granted Breakthrough Therapy Designation (BTD) to teplizumab (anti-CD3) for the prevention or delay of clinical type 1 diabetes (T1D) in individuals at risk of developing the disease. This is quite amazing and has implications way beyond T1D.  The question in relation to anti-CD3 treatment is this ‘true prevention’ or simply a disease...

astrocyte

Astrocytes (star-shapped cells that) are an often overlooked cells in the CNS. Here they are depleted and disease gets worse Inflammation and Demyelination in a Murine Animal Model of Multiple Sclerosis. Allnoch L, Baumgärtner W, Hansmann F.Int J Mol Sci. 2019;20(16). pii: E3922. So lets get promote them?……. but maybe not Neurotoxic potential (Nerve damaging) of reactive...

Animal Studies need to pull their socks up and be more transparent!

If people are working with animals, especially those of a severe nature, then is it time to change! In this report we suggest that what people are calling progressive EAE is nothing more that relapsing-remitting EAE that is ascychronous with increasing poor recovery. This is important because we know that relapsing EAE responds to T cell therapy but we want alternative treatements for progressive...

Thyroid disease with Alemtuzumab – risk mitigation

There is a popular old saying in English – “forewarned is forearmed”. Prior knowledge that something is going to happen offers tactical advantage, whether you’re at war or simply everyday life. The difficulty, however, is that more often than not we are transfixed by the detail of the matter, resulting in numerous avenues of investigation in the process, some of which are...

Life on Mars, Suppressor T cells are Back

For those of you not old enough to remember “Life on Mars”….yes it was a TV programme about a Cop who travelled back in time to the 1970s..sexism, bad haircuts, those platform shoes and hideous clothes and all that stuff ….with flash backs to a TV cop show called the Sweeney (The flying squad), who would go after armed robbers and yes it is a David Bowie song from the...

Is cholesterol truly bad for you?

Low-density lipoprotein particle, apolipoprotein B (blue) is surrounded by various forms of cholesterol (orange and yellow) and other lipids. JUAN GAERTNER/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY Scientists have known for a long time that cholesterol like other basic food components forms an essential component in a healthy human body. It forms the cell membrane architecture (or the cell wall), helps produce the...

How do B cell therapies work?

We have made the case that B cells are important targets for therapy. However this seems to be rather an anti-establishment view, especially if you don’t say it is because the B cells are simply helping T cells. This seems to be the prevailing thought that one person said to me “While substantial evidence suggests that MS is mainly a T cell driven disease, B cells play a non-redundant...

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