Sparky10 wrote:Ampyra is a potassium channel blocker, isn't it? Maybe I'm getting this backward but from what I'm reading here it seems Ampyra goes against this discovery.
From the Ampyra website:
"How is AMPYRA thought to help? In MS, the body's immune system mistakenly attacks the protective coating around nerve fibers, called myelin. When myelin is lost or damaged, potassium channels on the nerves open, and potassium leaks out. This can weaken or distort the messages being sent from the brain to the rest of the body, and in some people, this can lead to walking difficulties. AMPYRA is a broad-spectrum potassium channel blocker, and the first MS medication thought to enhance signal conduction by blocking some of the potassium leaks. This can make a difference for some people with MS."
The antigen is a piece of protein that the potassium channel is made from (or autoantigen). A foreign antigen is a piece of a virus. If your adaptive immune system is conditioined to recognize antigens (immunity) or autoantigens (autoimmunity) it will attack that protein and remember that protein if it is encountered again (via antibodies and autoantibodies).
It looks like Ampyra blocks potassium leakage out of the channel, while these finding suggest MS attacks the potassium channel itself.