Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Combination Therapy Including Antibiotics May Be Beneficial For Multiple Sclerosis

Date:
December 17, 2007
Source:
JAMA and Archives Journals
Summary:
A preliminary study suggests that combining a medication currently used to treat multiple sclerosis with an antibiotic may slow the progress of the disease, according to a new article. The most common type is relapsing-remitting MS, in which patients experience attacks of symptoms such as muscle weakness and spasms followed by periods of symptom-free remission.

A preliminary study suggests that combining a medication currently used to treat multiple sclerosis with an antibiotic may slow the progress of the disease, according to a new article.

"Multiple sclerosis (MS) is an immune-mediated disorder that affects genetically susceptible individuals after exposure to certain, as yet unidentified environmental antigens," or disease-causing agents, the authors write as background information in the article. The development of MS involves inflammation that destroys parts of the brain along with progressive degeneration of brain tissue.

The most common type is relapsing-remitting MS, in which patients experience attacks of symptoms such as muscle weakness and spasms followed by periods of symptom-free remission. Many patients with relapsing-remitting MS who take interferon, a medication that boosts the immune system and fights viruses, still experience relapses and may continue to develop new areas of damaged brain tissue (lesions) visible on magnetic resonance imaging (MRI).

Alireza Minagar, M.D., of Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center, Shreveport, and colleagues conducted a single-center trial involving 15 patients (average age 44.5) with relapsing-remitting MS who had been taking interferon for at least six months and were experiencing symptoms and developing new brain lesions. For four months, participants took 100 milligrams daily of the antibiotic doxycycline in addition to continuing interferon therapy. They underwent monthly neurological examinations, MRI to detect brain lesions and blood work to monitor safety.

After four months, the combination treatment resulted in fewer lesions visible on MRI--60 percent of the patients had more than a one-fourth reduction in the number of lesions from the beginning of the study. The patients also had reduced average scores on a scale designed to assess disability levels. Only one patient relapsed; adverse effects were mild and included only known effects of the two drugs individually rather than new effects associated with combining the medications.

Antibiotics in the tetracycline family, including doxycycline, may be effective against MS and other inflammatory diseases by inhibiting the action of enzymes that destroy certain nervous system cells, protecting the brain and increasing the effectiveness of the immune system, the authors note.

"There is growing interest in combination therapy in patients with MS to stabilize the clinical course, reduce the rate of clinical relapses and decelerate the progressive course of the underlying pathologic mechanism," they write. "Overall, data from this cohort suggest that the treatment combination of oral doxycycline and interferon beta-1a may be safe and effective in some patients with MS; however, further controlled clinical trials are warranted to demonstrate safety and efficacy in a larger patient population."

Journal article: Arch Neurol.2008;65(2):(doi:10.1001/archneurol.2007.41

Authors Dr. Minagar and Dr. Alexander have received independent medical grants from Bayer Pharmaceuticals and EMD Serono. This work was supported by an independent medical grant from Biogen Idec Inc.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by JAMA and Archives Journals. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

JAMA and Archives Journals. "Combination Therapy Including Antibiotics May Be Beneficial For Multiple Sclerosis." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 17 December 2007. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/12/071210163342.htm>.
JAMA and Archives Journals. (2007, December 17). Combination Therapy Including Antibiotics May Be Beneficial For Multiple Sclerosis. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 29, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/12/071210163342.htm
JAMA and Archives Journals. "Combination Therapy Including Antibiotics May Be Beneficial For Multiple Sclerosis." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/12/071210163342.htm (accessed July 29, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Deadly Ebola Virus Threatens West Africa

Deadly Ebola Virus Threatens West Africa

AP (July 28, 2014) West African nations and international health organizations are working to contain the largest Ebola outbreak in history. It's one of the deadliest diseases known to man, but the CDC says it's unlikely to spread in the U.S. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
$15B Deal on Vets' Health Care Reached

$15B Deal on Vets' Health Care Reached

AP (July 28, 2014) A bipartisan deal to improve veterans health care would authorize at least $15 billion in emergency spending to fix a veterans program scandalized by long patient wait times and falsified records. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Two Americans Contract Ebola in Liberia

Two Americans Contract Ebola in Liberia

Reuters - US Online Video (July 28, 2014) Two American aid workers in Liberia test positive for Ebola while working to combat the deadliest outbreak of the virus ever. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating

Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating

AP (July 28, 2014) Classes are being offered nationwide to encourage African Americans to learn about cooking fresh foods based on traditional African cuisine. The program is trying to combat obesity, heart disease and other ailments often linked to diet. (July 28) Video provided by AP
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:
from the past week

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