CategoryLab Lessons

Half way to explaining multiple sclerosis

Genetic roots of multiple sclerosis This paper is open access and so for the more adventuous and people with an interest in genes, I suggest that you read the paper. If not I think the abstract and summaries say sufficient. Genes focus interest on the microglia. I would say about time. There is a clear CD4 bias in the thought process as they focused on CD4 naive T cells and from a personal point...

Diabetes drug to the rescue. Making old cells young again

As you get older you do not repair as well, compared to when you are younger. This has been known for some time and a few years ago Prof Franklinstein sewed mice together and determined that young macrophages could allow old mice to repair. So it is an obvious thing to look for the elixior of youth. In other studies a blood protein promoted youthful effects in nerves Metformin is a treatment...

A smoking gun?

The big hole in the EBV hypothesis of MS is how does the virus cause the disease at a molecular and immunological level. There are as many theories as thinkers.  One theory is that EBV infects the CNS and MS is caused by an immune response to the virus in the brain of MSers. MS is then due to bystander damage of the immune cells finding and attacking the EBV infected cells. The evidence that EBV...

ARRIVE?. It won’t unless it gets enforced

As you know part of my job is to talk about the animal work we do and so it is appropriate that I comment on animal issues. (a) So you can understand a bit more on what we do and (b) so you can understand on the regulatory environment that we and others work in. I recently commented on the ARRIVE guidelines, which I teach to the students because it can help with experimental design. These are...

Menopause

Is it MS or the menopause? “I am a woman with MS and have started going through the menopause. My last menstrual period was four months ago and have frequent hot flushes. All of a sudden my MS seems to have worsened. I am more fatigued, my sleep is disrupted, my bladder problems are worse, my mood is all over the place and my walking has deteriorated. Is this my MS or is simply the menopause? “...

Vitamin D in Mice

High dose vitamin D exacerbates central nervous system autoimmunity by raising T-cell excitatory calcium As you know we have posted on this paper already and we were rather critical of the paper, because the refereeing was frankly rubbish. However what do we know? This study in mice has been picked as Editors choice in the journal Brain and it got a special mention in ECTRIMS2019. The home...

The cause of MS

When I posted the link to our EBV and MS meta-analysis on social media yesterday I was taken to task because of the slow progress we have made in MS prevention.  Why has no preventative action been taken yet? What are they waiting for? I have had MS for more than 50 years and in all those decades the Epstein- Barr virus has been a usual suspect over and over and over again. Had glandular fever...

Shrinking MS lesions – anything to take note of?

Are you surprised that some MS lesions shrink in size? It has nothing to do with quantum mechanics – Planck’s constant or Pym particles. However, it has been noted for a while now that in some individuals their MS lesions could shrink. The prevailing hypothesis is that shrinking lesions represent resolution of the underlying inflammation or even possibly repair. Others believe, like...

Short- or long-sighted

I saw three patients 9-and-half-years after starting treatment with alemtuzumab as first-line therapy, yesterday. It was a remarkable experience. Only one of the three patients had needed a third cycle of alemtuzumab. All are in long-term remission; i.e. flat-lining on the EDSS, relapse-free and with no MRI activity (NEDA-3). Their EDSS scores yesterday were 1.0, 1.5 and 2.0. All of them are...

OVO Study

Finally, after a week or more of thinking and contemplation my opinion about the ofatumumab vs. teriflunomide trial data (ASCLEPIOS I and II); another of my ECTRIMS highlights.  The result of the ASCLEPIOS I and II are not unexpected and in line with the treatment effects of anti-CD20 therapies with some caveats.  Novartis summary: Both ASCLEPIOS I and II studies met their primary endpoints in...

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