Common Soil-Based Pathogen May be MS Trigger

This is one of the very few MS research studies I have found to be truly promising and, yes, even exciting!

A bacterium has been identified by a Weill Cornell Medical College and The Rockefeller University research team that it believes may trigger multiple sclerosis.

PLoS: The Public Library of Science

According to an article published in PLoS ONE, (a peer-reviewed, open-access resource from the Public Library of Science), this study is the first to identify the bacterium, Clostridium (C.) perfringens type B, in humans.  The study’s senior investigator, Dr. Timothy Vartanian, said “While it is clear that new MS disease activity requires an environmental trigger, the identity of this trigger has eluded the MS scientific community for decades.”

Almost immediately I wondered about a potential connection to the 2011 work supported by National Institutes of Health grants that genotyped components predicted to play a role in MS etiology and revealed significant associations to MS.  [Click here]  Is there a genetic component that makes some people more susceptible to this bacteria?

This might be a leap in conclusions and I AM a medical lay person.  However, connected or not, these two studies hold what seem to be real promise toward the discovery of the cause(s) and treatment of MS.

Be sure to read the October 16, 2013, article on this investigation at the Weill Cornell Medical College website.

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