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New Study Sheds Light on How Immune B Cells May Activate MS

September 6, 2018

Researchers from the University of Zurich and others report new findings on how immune system activity may get started in multiple sclerosis. They found that memory B cells (immune cells that normally help to fight infections) activate another type of immune cell called T cells, which are known culprits in immune attacks that result in brain and spinal cord damage in MS. The team also identified a protein produced by B cells that T cells react to. This study yields new information on the underlying mechanisms involved in MS, helps to explain how the disease-modifying treatment Ocrevus® (ocrelizumab, Genentech, which depletes B cells) might work, and reveals new targets for the development of better treatments to stop the nervous system damage that causes MS symptoms and progressive disability.

Read more about the study on Science Daily

Read the paper, available via Open Access in the journal Cell

About Multiple Sclerosis

Multiple sclerosis is an unpredictable, often disabling disease of the central nervous system. There is currently no cure for MS. Symptoms vary from person to person and range from numbness and tingling, to mobility challenges, blindness and paralysis. An estimated 1 million people live with MS in the United States. Most people are diagnosed between the ages of 20 and 50, and it affects women three times more than men.

About the National Multiple Sclerosis Society

The National MS Society, founded in 1946, funds cutting-edge research, drives change through advocacy, and provides programs and services to help people affected by MS live their best lives. Connect to learn more and get involved:, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube or 1-800-344-4867.


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