Patients Immune Systems Reset with Multiple Sclerosis Breakthrough

Reasearchers have found that there is a way to reset the immune system with a M.S break through. There research started initially with ten patients but one withdrew right before the procedure. The study involved patients getting a small dose of there own white blood cell. Read more here.

 

A phase 1 trial of a new treatment to reset the immune systems of multiple sclerosis patients shows the therapy is safe and highly effective.

Multiple Sclerosis Breakthrough

German researchers today unveiled the results of a study on a new procedure that safely resets a multiple sclerosis (MS) patient’s immune system. It can reduce the body’s attacks on the protective myelin sheath that insulates nerve cells in the brain.

For this small Phase 1 trial, which was a collaboration between Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine, University Hospital Zurich in Switzerland, and University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf in Germany, ten patients were selected. Eight patients with relapsing-remitting MS (RRMS) and two with secondary progressive MS (SPMS) were enrolled initially, but one RRMS patient withdrew before the procedure.

Multiple sclerosis is an autoimmune disease in which the immune system attacks the myelin covering that insulates nerve cells in the central nervous system, which includes the brain and spinal cord. MS is a chronic, degenerative, and often disabling disease affecting more than 400,000 people in the U.S. and more than 1.2 million people worldwide. Symptoms can range from mild numbness to paralysis and blindness.

Pressing the Immune System’s “Reset” Button

The study involved giving patients a single infusion of their own white blood cells, or T-cells, which were processed and then reintroduced into the body. The T-cells were used to deliver billions of myelin antigens into the bloodstream, forcing the patients’ immune systems to recognize the antigens as harmless and build up a tolerance to them. An antigen is a substance that the body believes is a harmful invader. When the body detects an antigen, it releases antibodies to find and destroy it.

In patients with MS, the body creates antibodies to fight very specific antigens, in this case myelin-specific peptides, residing in the central nervous system. The seven antigens researchers used in this study were all proteins found in myelin. Using more than one antigen increased the odds that the correct antigen targeted by the patient’s immune system would be included.

The patients’ T-cells were isolated and then coupled with all seven antigens used in the trial. The coupling was achieved using a chemical cross-linker called EDC that allows the antigens to stick to the T-cells but does not, itself, become part of that bond.

These T-cells, with their antigen hitchhikers, were then rinsed twice to remove the cross-linker and re-suspended in the patient’s blood plasma. This cocktail of antigen-spiked T-cells, suspended in plasma, was then given to the patient through an IV. The process from start to finish took about nine hours.

source:http://www.healthline.com/health-news/ms-breakthrough-treatment-resets-immune-system-stops-myelin-attacks-060513

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