I received an e-mail requesting that I write a follow-up to last week's blog post on multiple sclerosis (MS). I was asked to detail the immune-modulating therapies available for MS patients.
As a neuroscientist, the purpose of my original post was to explain the basic neurology behind the disease: what myelin is, what happens to myelin during MS, and why lack of myelin results in the symptoms that manifest. I also wanted to inform readers of the latest research in the field. My intention was not to leave out information or misinform, but given my lack of knowledge in other fields, I confined the blog post to my expertise.
Today I'll take off my brain hat and (do my best to) trade it in for an immunologist's.
Together, let's explore the therapies out there for those suffering this mysterious disorder.
Types of MS
Firstly, I'd like to outline the four types of multiple sclerosis:
1. Relapsing-remitting (RRMS): 75-80% of patients are initially diagnosed with RRMS. People with RRMS experience days- to weeks-long flare-ups, or "relapses," followed by periods of no symptoms, called "remission."
2. Secondary-progressive (SPMS): symptoms worsen over time in this type of MS, with or witho . . . More