Enhanced axonal response of mitochondria to demyelination offers neuroprotection: implications for multiple sclerosis

The discovery of a molecular target to protect nerves from damage in MS has been reported in a study which was recently published in Acta Neuropathologica. 

A research study spanning more than a decade has lead researchers in the University of Edinburgh to discover a natural mechanism in the body which they are calling ‘axonal response of mitochondria to demyelination love (ARMD). The study found that while the natural functioning alone is not sufficient in addressing demyelination but that is possible with the support of a drug to enhance this response. 

The researcher found that by using the diabetes drug ‘Piolitazone’ they could enhance ARMD to protect the nerves. 

Lead author on the paper Dr Don Mahad said “Although our understanding of MS has vastly improved over the last two decades, new therapies still do not protect nerve fibres. Such protection is the Holy Grail in MS treatment — not only for the relapsing form of MS, which has various options available, but for progressive forms too, where treatment continues to lag behind...This is an incredibly important discovery — one we believe could finally bridge the gap in MS treatment.”

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