The European Neurology Society held a conference last week. Here is a summary. It's good news that MRI imaging is improving which should lead to a better understanding of MS and better ways of monitoring the effect of treatments. Good to see that:
“A central aspect of the treatment of MS will be, on the one hand, control over the inflammatory component and, on the other hand, over the repair mechanisms and neuroprotection, meaning supporting regeneration of damaged nerve tissue.” If only they could stop talking about it and get on with it.
My National Health Service neuro attended (not my good neuro or the bad neuro who diagnosed me) and I see him in early August. I'll ask him how it went.
2,200 Neurologists Assembled In Lausanne
International scientists discuss the most recent research results, for example, of the treatment of multiple sclerosis and Parkinson's disease, in the field on sleep research, in the treatment of strokes or in the visualization of cerebral processes through the most modern MRI procedures at the European Neurological Society conference currently taking place in Lausanne (Switzerland).
A look at the spread of neurological diseases shows how important this new awareness is: "Neurological complaints are developing into downright widespread diseases,” said Prof. Dr. Gerard Said (Paris), secretary general of the ENS, at the official press conference of the 16th annual meeting of the European Neurological Society (ENS) in Lausanne. 1.1 million people a year in Europe suffer a stroke. Roughly 41 million people suffer from migraines, almost five million Europeans have dementia, and 1.2 million people suffer from Parkinson's disease. Altogether, 51 million people in Europe suffer from a neurological disease. Still, experts criticised during the meeting, neurological diseases do not receive the same attention in the public and politically as, for instance, cardiovascular conditions or cancer.
ENS conference shows the current state of the research
The European Neurology Conference ENS 2006, where over 2,200 experts assembled in Lausanne, accommodated the newest developments in the field of neurology. “We discussed the newest diagnostic, therapeutic and technological developments regarding all neurological disease groups afflicting many people, such as strokes, multiple sclerosis, dementia, sleep disorders, migraines or Parkinson's disease,” said Prof. Said. A total of 700 scientific contributions, 20 advanced training courses and a number of top-class symposia reflect the state of research.
Neuroimaging - Images show how our brain works
"Current research results concerning imaging of cerebral processes through modern MRI imaging are an important highlight of the conference,“ said Prof. Said: “Through this we expect to detect important signs for the further development of cerebral research and particularly for treatment of people with cerebral disorders.”
Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), radioactive marked antibodies or magnetic resonance spectroscopy showed new ways in diagnosing and treating dangerous diseases such as Alzheimer's, multiple sclerosis or cerebral tumors. Through magnetic resonance spectroscopy the body's own “markers,” that provide important evidence of certain disorders, can be identified in the brain. Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) represented a specifically remarkable development. Prof. Said: “This method, for example, allows for detecting the smallest changes in the blood's oxygen content as is the case through activation of cerebral regions. This allows us to examine how the brain works, but also how it reacts to diseases and what possibilities we have to change our treatment through training or how to overcome damages.”
New therapeutic options for multiple sclerosis
Numerous lectures and discussions during the meeting were dedicated to the better understanding of the disease mechanisms of multiple sclerosis. “A central aspect of the treatment of MS will be, on the one hand, control over the inflammatory component and, on the other hand, over the repair mechanisms and neuroprotection, meaning supporting regeneration of damaged nerve tissue,” Prof. Said explained. “Impressive data on new treatments of MS are being presented at the ENS.”
Source: Medical News Today © 2006 MediLexicon International Ltd