Funding given to the University of Rochester Medical Center, Department of Neurology to the tune of $4.5 million, comes from a mixture of private and public sources. A couple of the newly funded projects are for the repair of myelin, material formed as protection around nerves found in the brain.
Mr. Yasime of Lima is more than happy they are ‘working’ this angle for those like him “who have this disease.” He has just stopped with his Tysabri infusions because his immune system became so weak that he “seemed to pick up everything underneath the moon, sun and stars so hearing about all this new myelin research helps me to see we are moving forward.”
Part of the funding, $1.7 million, is going to specific stem-cell/myelin research of mice that will be given human oligodendroctyes (type of brain cell that creates myelin in the brain) and human myelin so as to recreate what happens to those who have multiple sclerosis (MS). They will be trying to see what happens at the molecular level, hoping to learn how to regenerate new myelin.
$770,000 was given to them from the National MS Society to fund the team that is pursuing oligodendrocytes and how they respond to demyelination so that a better predictor of the effects can be found once it is transplanted into the cells of patients.
Scientists have been working overseas on stem cells and MS in this past year as well.
Last year’s article reported Cambridge and Edinburgh getting ready to set up clinical trials for their work with the molecule RXR-gamma and a piece written back in July of this year, on the U.K.’s Multiple Sclerosis Society and United Kingdom’s Stem Cell Foundation, releases information regarding their newest research.
Biogen, the makers of Avonex, Tysabri and Fampyra have also been mentioned for having gave $670,000 to focus on the mice that will be given human myelin. They want to concentrate on the progression of progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy (PML) to help with Tysabri.
Sources: urmc.rochester.edu/news/story/index.cfm; rbj.net/article.asp?aID=188673
For more information about myelin please see:
The Myelin Project can be reached for more information at: Myelin.Org/Contact.
Myelin Repair Foundation can be reached at: MyelinRepair.Org/Contac
For local information: for those who live in Lima, Ohio, the Northwestern Ohio MS Chapter can be reached at: 401 Tomahawk Drive, Maumee, OH at (419) 897-7263. They are located approximately an hour and a half from Lima, Ohio and 45 minutes from Findlay, Ohio. For directions please click here at Bing Maps.
Further interesting reading:
Demyelination may be “bystander” effect in multiple sclerosis (video)