Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Scientists Push Forward Understanding Of Multiple Sclerosis

Date:
December 10, 2005
Source:
University of Edinburgh
Summary:
New findings by a research team from the University of Edinburgh may help explain why diseases like multiple sclerosis which attack the myelin sheath -- an insulator which protects the body's nervous system- cause such severe symptoms in MS patients.

New findings by a research team from the University of Edinburgh may help explain why diseases like multiple sclerosis (MS) which attack the myelin sheath -- an insulator which protects the body's nervous system - cause such severe symptoms in MS patients. Their discoveries may lead to new ways to help treat patients with MS, it is reported in the journal Neuron today (Thursday, 8 December).

The scientists have made an important breakthrough in understanding how animals with complex nervous systems, such as humans, achieve rapid signalling between their nerve cells. Communication between nerve cells and other organs such as muscles needs to be extremely fast, so that the body responds quickly to instructions from the brain. Electrical signals can travel rapidly from the brain because they 'jump' down nerves using specialised hotspots called nodes.

Professor Peter Brophy of the Centre for Neuroscience Research at the Unversity and leader of the study explained: "It has been known for some time that the location of the nodes along nerves is determined by specialised cells called glia, which surround nerves with a myelin sheath. The nerves of babies are surrounded by these glial cells in the first few years after birth, which ensures proper development of the human nervous system. If nerves do not get their myelin sheath, or if they lose it later because of diseases like MS, the nodes either don't form, or are disrupted, leading to a serious loss of nervous system function, which in turn can lead to blindness, paralysis or even death."

Professor Brophy's team has discovered the key molecules- two proteins found in the gene Neurofascin- that link glial ensheathment of the nerve fibres to the formation of nodes. "We hope that the discovery of these proteins will help us to find ways to improve nerve conduction in patients with conditions where the myelin sheath is attacked," he said.



Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Edinburgh. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of Edinburgh. "Scientists Push Forward Understanding Of Multiple Sclerosis." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 10 December 2005. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/12/051210120754.htm>.
University of Edinburgh. (2005, December 10). Scientists Push Forward Understanding Of Multiple Sclerosis. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/12/051210120754.htm
University of Edinburgh. "Scientists Push Forward Understanding Of Multiple Sclerosis." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/12/051210120754.htm (accessed October 20, 2014).

Share This



More Mind & Brain News

Monday, October 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Your Birth Season Might Determine Your Temperament

Your Birth Season Might Determine Your Temperament

Newsy (Oct. 20, 2014) A new study says the season you're born in can determine your temperament — and one season has a surprising outcome. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Court Ruling Means Kids' Online Activity Could Be On Parents

Court Ruling Means Kids' Online Activity Could Be On Parents

Newsy (Oct. 17, 2014) In a ruling attorneys for both sides agreed was a first of its kind, a Georgia appeals court said parents can be held liable for what kids put online. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
The Best Foods To Boost Your Mood

The Best Foods To Boost Your Mood

Buzz60 (Oct. 17, 2014) Feeling down? Reach for the refrigerator, not the medicine cabinet! TC Newman (@PurpleTCNewman) shares some of the best foods to boost your mood. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
You Can Get Addicted To Google Glass, Apparently

You Can Get Addicted To Google Glass, Apparently

Newsy (Oct. 15, 2014) Researchers claim they’ve diagnosed the first example of the disorder in a 31-year-old U.S. Navy serviceman. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins