Drug may reverse MS brain damage
There is good news for the people suffering from multiple sclerosis. New medical discovery have shown that a drug had halted and reverses debilitating effects of disease. This new finding has rekindleded hopes for thousands of people suffering from the disease. The disease destroys the central nervous system.
A drug developed to treat leukaemia may be a powerful new weapon against multiple sclerosis, researchers say.
Alemtuzumab appears to stop progression of the disease in patients with early stage active relapsing-remitting MS - the most common form of the condition.
The University of Cambridge study, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, also suggests the drug may enable repair of previous damage.
However, it can produce potentially serious side-effects, they warn.
As of now there is no medications available for the permanent tretment of this disease and current medications at best slow down the growth of the disease.
When the drug is given, it appears to suppress the immune system by reducing white blood cells called lymphocytes, which are crucial for the body to fight infections. Although the patients in the trial did not suffer from a rise in infections, some did develop new immune disorders. The most common side-effect involved the immune system attacking the thyroid gland, which affected nearly 25% on the new drug. A few patients (2.8%) suffered an immune disorder which affected platelets in their bloodstream. One patient in the trial died of the condition. "Both of these conditions can be monitored and treated providing diagnosis is made quickly enough