What is the role of antibodies in chronic inflammation in MS?

Photo shows a 48 well plate in a lab

Professor Chris Linington

University of Glasgow


About the project

In progressive MS, damage to the protective myelin coating around nerves can be caused by a number of different factors. Some of this cannot be prevented by existing treatments that aim to reduce the immune attack on myelin, which could be why current treatments haven’t proved effective for people with progressive MS.

One of these factors is a type of protein present in the immune system, called an antibody. While we know that antibodies contribute to the damage seen in MS, we don’t yet fully understand how they have this effect.

In a project we funded previously, researchers identified a potential mechanism for this antibody-mediated damage. This project aims to build on these results, identifying which antibodies in particular have this effect and learning more about how they work in an animal model of MS. Finally, we will explore the importance of these antibodies in MS by comparing samples of fluid around the spinal cord from people with and without MS.

How will it help people with MS?

Understanding how these antibodies can contribute to nerve damage in MS could help us to identify and test new treatments for people with progressive MS.

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£10a month could pay for lab equipment like microscope slides to study the building blocks of MS

£20a month could pay for lab equipment like petri dishes to grow bacteria important for studying genetics

£30a month could process a blood sample to help us understand what causes MS, so we can stop it in its tracks

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