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Can we find drugs that remove myelin debris more quickly?

David Lyons - fishes
Lead researcher:
Dr David Lyons
Based at:
University of Edinburgh
MS Society funding:

About the project

In MS, the immune system damages the protective myelin coating around nerve cells. In order for the brain to repair the damage with new myelin, it first has to get rid of the old myelin debris. Special immune cells called macrophages usually clear up the debris, but in MS they struggle to do so quickly enough.

David’s team recently developed a live imaging system to automatically assess how different drugs affect myelin formation in growing zebrafish.

This project will use the same system to look at how myelin debris is cleared in the brains of zebrafish. By looking at the effect of different drugs on the rate of clean-up the team aim to identify ones that have the potential to be tested as myelin repair treatments for MS.

How will it help people with MS?

Finding treatments to slow or stop progression in MS is our top priority. Developing ways to quickly identify drugs that could help the brain repair damaged myelin is an important step towards developing new treatments.