A new study has been done that has uncovered the key to stopping multiple sclerosis before symptoms start.
The team of researchers looked for an antibody called KIR4.1 protein; the antibody is commonly found in the blood of people that have MS, but is rarely found in the blood of people that don’t have the disease. Studying the blood samples holds the key to finding the protein associated with MS and treating the disease before it fully develops.
“If our results can be replicated in larger populations, our findings may help to detect MS earlier in a subgroup of patients,” said study author Dr. Viola Biberacher, with Technical University in Munich, Germany. “Finding the disease before symptoms appear means we can better prepare to treat and possibly even prevent those symptoms.”
Multiple sclerosis is an autoimmune disease that affects the brain and spinal cord (central nervous system). The disease is more commonly found in women between the ages of 20 to 40 years old, but it can be found at any age.
The myelin sheath is a protective cover for the nerve cells and when the myelin sheath gets damaged the nerve signals slow down or stop causing nerve damage. The inflamed and damaged nerves are then attacked by the body’s immune cells; this damage usually occurs in areas around the brain, optic nerves, and spinal cord.
Common symptoms of multiple sclerosis are: weakened muscles, periods of numbness, shaky or difficulty moving, and decreased motor skills.
This new breaking research will help to detect the protein KIR4.1 in blood stream and give doctors a better chance to treat the disease before symptoms fully develop.
Can Multiple Sclerosis Be Stopped Before It Starts? Studying Blood Samples Holds the Key.