Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Two categories of multiple sclerosis patients defined

Date:
September 26, 2012
Source:
Brigham and Women's Hospital
Summary:
Medical researchers have found a way to distinguish patients with multiple sclerosis into two meaningful subsets.

There are approximately 400,000 people in the United States with multiple sclerosis. Worldwide, the number jumps to more than 2.1 million people. Rather than a one-size-fits-all approach to treating the millions with multiple sclerosis, what if doctors could categorize patients to create more personalized treatments? A new study by researchers at Brigham and Women's Hospital (BWH) may one day make this idea a reality in the fight against the debilitating autoimmune disease.

A research team led by Philip De Jager, MD, PhD, BWH Department of Neurology, senior study author, has found a way to distinguish patients with multiple sclerosis into two meaningful subsets. The ability to categorize patients with multiple sclerosis may open new doors for treatment development.

The study will be electronically published on September 26, 2012 in Science Translational Medicine.

"Our results suggest that we can divide the multiple sclerosis patient population into groups that have different levels of disease activity," said De Jager. "These results motivate us to improve these distinctions with further research so that we may reach our goal of identifying the best treatment for each individual who has multiple sclerosis."

De Jager and his team extracted RNA -- key molecules involved in making proteins from the instructions found in the DNA sequence -- from blood cells of patients with multiple sclerosis. After analyzing the samples, they found distinct sets of RNA molecules among the patient samples. These unique sets formed a transcriptional signature that distinguished two sets of multiple sclerosis patients -- MSa patients and MSb patients -- with those in the MSa group having a higher risk for future multiple sclerosis relapse.

According to the researchers, knowing the category a person with multiple sclerosis is in may help doctors make more informed treatment decisions. For instance, since a patient who falls into the MSa category is more likely to experience relapse, her doctor may consider a stronger treatment for the patient.

In light of the discovery, the researchers remain cautious about the findings.

"Our study is an important step towards the goal of personalized medicine in MS, but much work remains to be done to understand under which circumstance and in combination with which other information this transcriptional signature may become useful in a clinical setting," said De Jager.

However, from the pre-clinical perspective, the researchers recognize that the findings are essential because they build on earlier studies that had suggested that this structure might be present.

"The study will further enable the community of MS researchers to build upon this transcriptional signature with other data in order to enhance patient care in the future," said De Jager.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Brigham and Women's Hospital. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Linda Ottoboni, Brendan T. Keenan, Pablo Tamayo, Manik Kuchroo, Jill P. Mesirov, Guy J. Buckle, Samia J. Khoury, David A. Hafler, Howard L. Weiner, and Philip L. De Jager. An RNA Profile Identifies Two Subsets of Multiple Sclerosis Patients Differing in Disease Activity. Sci Transl Med, 26 September 2012 DOI: 10.1126/scitranslmed.3004186

Cite This Page:

Brigham and Women's Hospital. "Two categories of multiple sclerosis patients defined." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 26 September 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/09/120926141659.htm>.
Brigham and Women's Hospital. (2012, September 26). Two categories of multiple sclerosis patients defined. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 1, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/09/120926141659.htm
Brigham and Women's Hospital. "Two categories of multiple sclerosis patients defined." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/09/120926141659.htm (accessed September 1, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Monday, September 1, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

We've Got Mites Living In Our Faces And So Do You

We've Got Mites Living In Our Faces And So Do You

Newsy (Aug. 30, 2014) A new study suggests 100 percent of adult humans (those over 18 years of age) have Demodex mites living in their faces. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Liberia Continues Fight Against Ebola

Liberia Continues Fight Against Ebola

AFP (Aug. 30, 2014) Authorities in Liberia try to stem the spread of the Ebola epidemic by raising awareness and setting up sanitation units for people to wash their hands. Duration: 00:41 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
California Passes 'yes-Means-Yes' Campus Sexual Assault Bill

California Passes 'yes-Means-Yes' Campus Sexual Assault Bill

Reuters - US Online Video (Aug. 30, 2014) California lawmakers pass a bill requiring universities to adopt "affirmative consent" language in their definitions of consensual sex, part of a nationwide drive to curb sexual assault on campuses. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
New Drug Could Reduce Cardiovascular Deaths

New Drug Could Reduce Cardiovascular Deaths

Newsy (Aug. 30, 2014) The new drug from Novartis could reduce cardiovascular deaths by 20 percent compared to other similar drugs. 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:
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