Archive - Sep 20, 2006
From an article of the same title on BBCNews.com:
Vitamin shots may help protect multiple sclerosis patients from severe long-term disability, a study suggests.
Currently, there is no effective treatment for the chronic progressive phase of MS, when serious disability is most likely to appear.
Researchers cut the risk of nerve degeneration in mice with MS-type symptoms by giving them a form of vitamin B3 called nicotinamide.
The Children's Hospital Boston study appears in the Journal of Neuroscience.
MS, which affects about 85,000 people in the UK, is a disease of the central nervous system.
It causes the break down of the myelin sheath, a fatty protein, which coats nerve fibres, disrupting the ability to conduct electrical impulses to and from the brain.
Many patients develop a form of the disease called relapsing-remitting MS, in which bouts of illness are followed by complete or partial recovery. In this early phase anti-inflammatory drugs can help.
But eventually patients can enter the chronic progressive phase, for which there is no good treatment.