"During the course of her physician fellowship,
Natasha Frost, MD, is helping to design
and conduct clinical trials in persons with
MS under the experienced eyes of top MS
experts at the Cleveland Clinic’s Mellen
Center for MS Treatment and Research. Dr. Frost is also gaining experience in
evaluating MS patients and managing their
clinical care. She is receiving hands-on training
in MRI, and doing extensive coursework
to receive a Masters degree in clinical research
from Case Western Reserve."
This project should instead be called "How to be a doctor". Why is the NMSS funding training for med students? Isn't this what med school is supposed to do? Oh right, Dr. Cohen from the Cleveland Clinic is on the Advisory Panel for the NMSS. This particular grant if for $120,000. I would rather see this kind of money used for a trial for LDN.
I see that one of the funded projects is looking at glutamate. But many of the projects including this one still make the assumption that it is the immune response that kicks it all off. Why can't they try it from a different angle e.g. something is happening in the CNS which causes cells to start dying off (maybe a chemical change caused by bacteria or virus). The good old immune system kicks in to clean up the mess and, maybe, causes some further damage. Coming from this angle the immune system is not the cause and even if you kill it off (with chemo etc) the underlying disease process continues.
One of the presentations at ACTRIMS / ECTRIMS suggested that MS was a global disease of the CNS - lesions were just a tiny part. Scary stuff, but if progress is to be made it's the underlying process causing the damage that has to be addressed.
It's good news that further research is being funded, but I'd be a lot happier if EAE didn't feature so prominently. HarryZ has made the point several times that this is not the equivalent of human MS. Do the little mice in the laboratories wear eye patches, catheters and ride around on electric wheelchairs?
Well, yeah.............I know what you mean about EAE.
As for the "cause" of MS? I don't think you'll like what my opinion is, but I don't there IS any one cause to be found. I think it is just an intrinsic (probably genetic) screw-up mainly, that is then exacerbated by any number of things that are specific to each individual. Thereby making it literally thousands if not millions of possible causes, not just one at all. And that will be virtually impossible to narrow down.
I think that once someone is known to have a predisposition to CNS problems such as MS, that chemical agents to stabilize the physiological processes of each individual will be always required. MS is like epilepsy or diabetes. There is no cure, but there is stabilization and prevention.
I think I'd have to agree with what you said the ACTRIMS Conference indicated. It's a global condition of the CNS - with lesions only being a tiny part.
Unfortunately, "specializing" in MS research isn't ordinarily a part of a neurologist's training in med school. They have to find and study that as an extension somewhere. And the NMSS IS one of those educational partners. Otherwise, we'd have even fewer MS researchers than we do now. Dr. Moses at Vanderbilt obtained his training in MS from the NMSS.
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