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Study Finds Biological Signs that Increasing Speed of Nerve Signals Reflects Myelin Repair - May Improve MS Clinical Trials

December 18, 2019

Researchers funded in part by the National MS Society have found biological evidence that the recovery of nerve signaling speed along the optic nerve after its insulating myelin coating has been damaged – detected using a method called visual evoked potentials (VEP) – may reflect myelin repair. This affirms the potential value of VEP in future clinical trials of myelin repair strategies for MS. The team is led by Professor Ian D. Duncan (University of Wisconsin-Madison). 
  • VEP is a method of using flashing lights to measure the speed of nerve signaling in the optic nerve – the bundle of nerve fibers that relays visual signals between the eyes and the brain.
  • VEP is sometimes used in clinical settings to detect changes in nerve signaling. What is new in this research, conducted in lab models, is that the team uncovered biological evidence of myelin repair occurring in conjunction with recovering nerve signals.
  • Affirming VEP as a tool for detecting myelin repair would improve the ability to detect the success of myelin repair strategies in MS clinical trials.
Read More About Research on Myelin Repair

About Multiple Sclerosis

Multiple sclerosis is an unpredictable, often disabling disease of the central nervous system. Symptoms range from numbness and tingling to blindness and paralysis, and there is currently no cure for MS. The progress, severity and specific symptoms of MS in any one person cannot yet be predicted, but advances in research and treatment are leading to better understanding and moving us closer to a world free of MS. An estimated 1 million people live with MS in the United States. Most people with MS are diagnosed between the ages of 20 and 50, and it affects women three times more than men.


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