Navigation Links
Breakthrough offers first direct measurement of spinal cord myelin in multiple sclerosis
Date:9/23/2013

Researchers have made an exciting breakthrough developing a first-of-its-kind imaging tool to examine myelin damage in multiple sclerosis (MS). An extremely difficult disease to diagnose, the tool will help physicians diagnose patients earlier, monitor the disease's progression, and evaluate therapy efficacy.

Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine scientists have developed a novel molecular probe detectable by positron emission tomography (PET) imaging. The new molecular marker, MeDAS, offers the first non-invasive visualization of myelin integrity of the entire spinal cord at the same time, as published today in an article in the Annals of Neurology.

"While MS originates in the immune system, the damage occurs to the myelin structure of the central nervous system. Our discovery brings new hope to clinicians who may be able to make an accurate diagnosis and prognosis in as little as a few hours compared to months or even years," said Yanming Wang, PhD, senior author of study and associate professor of radiology at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine. "Because of its shape and size, it is particularly difficult to directly detect myelin damage in the spinal cord; this is the first time we have been able to image its function at the molecular level."

As the most common acquired autoimmune disease currently affecting more than two million people worldwide, MS is characterized by destruction of myelin, the membrane that protects nerves. Once damaged, it inhibits the nerves' ability to transmit electrical impulses, causing cognitive impairment and mobility dysfunction. So far, there is no cure for MS, therapies are only available that modify the symptoms.

In addition to its role in monitoring the effects of myelin-repair drugs currently under development, the new imaging tool offers a real-time quantitative clinical diagnosis of MS. A long lag exists between the onset of disease, physical symptoms in the patient and diagnosis via behavioral testing and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). The lesions, or plaques, as detected by a MRI in the brain and spinal cord are not myelin specific and thus poorly associated with a patient's disease severity or progression. There is an urgent need to find a new imaging marker that correlates with a patient's pathology.

"This discovery has open the door to develop new drugs that can truly restore nerve function, not just modify the symptoms," said Robert Miller, PhD, co-author on the study, vice president for research for Case Western Reserve and the Allen C. Holmes Professor of Neurological Diseases at the School of Medicine. "A cure for MS requires both repairing myelin and a tool to measure the mechanism."

For the past 20 years, Miller's lab has been working tirelessly to create new myelin-repair therapies that would restore nerve function. Successful translation of new drugs from animal studies to human clinical trials is contingent upon researchers' ability to measure and evaluate the effectiveness of a therapy.

Created by Wang's laboratory, the MeDAS molecular probe works like a homing device. Injected into the body intravenously, it is programmed to seek out and bind only to myelin in the central nervous system, i.e., the brain, spinal cord and optic nerves. A positron-emitting radioisotope label on the molecule allows a PET scanner to detect the targets and quantify their intensity and location. The data can then be reconstructed into an image as shown in the article: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/ana.23965/abstract.

"This is an indispensable tool to help find a new way to treat MS down the road" said Chunying Wu, PhD, first author of the study and instructor of radiology at Case Western Reserve. "It can also be used as a platform technology to unlock the mysteries of other myelin related diseases such as spinal cord injury."


'/>"/>

Contact: Jessica Studeny
jessica.studeny@case.edu
216-368-4692
Case Western Reserve University
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Voices Against Brain Cancer Discusses Possible Breakthrough in Brain Cancer Treatment
2. SafeToSleep Expands International Distribution of Breakthrough Sleep and Breathing Baby Monitor
3. Lipo Body Sculpture of Houston Announces Breakthrough Treatment for Non-Surgical Neck Tightening
4. The Health Briefs TV Show Airs Segment on Breakthrough Therapies
5. Breakthrough model holds promise for treating Graves disease
6. Medical Researchers Say They Have Made a Breakthrough That Could Lead to a Potential Cure for AIDS
7. Golf Putting Tips
8. How “Breakthrough Putting Secrets” Helps People Become Professional Golfers – Vinamy
9. Putting Tips
10. How “Breakthrough Putting Secrets” Helps People Play Golf Professionally –V-kool
11. RantNetwork Introduces Breakthrough Translation and Interpretation App for the Mobile Communication Market
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/24/2016)... Michigan (PRWEB) , ... June 24, 2016 , ... June ... about the dangers associated with chronic pain and the benefits of holistic treatments, ... individuals who are suffering with Sickle Cell Disease. , Sickle Cell Disease (SCD) is ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... Global law firm Greenberg Traurig, ... Elite. The attorneys chosen by their peers for this recognition are considered among the ... Traurig Shareholders received special honors as members of this year’s Legal Elite Hall of ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... 24, 2016 , ... Topical BioMedics, Inc, makers of Topricin and MyPainAway Pain Relief Products, join ... wage raise to $12 an hour by 2020 and then adjusting it yearly to increase ... of the minimum wage, assure the wage floor does not erode again, and make future ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... ... to recognize Dr. Barry M. Weintraub as a prominent plastic surgeon and the ... in the world, and the most handsome men, look naturally attractive. Plastic surgery ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... 24, 2016 , ... National recruitment firm Slone Partners is pleased ... and genomics experience, as Vice President of North American Capital Sales at HTG ... leading the sales team in the commercialization of the HTG EdgeSeq system and associated ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... , Belgium , June 24, ... VNRX), today announced the appointment of Dr. ... Directors as a Non-Executive Director, effective June 23, ... Audit, Compensation and Nominations and Governance Committees.  As ... Futcher will provide independent expertise and strategic counsel ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... -- Research and Markets has announced the addition ... 2022" report to their offering. ... with kidney failure, it replaces the function of kidneys by ... and thus the treatment helps to keep the patient body,s ... Increasing number of ESRD patients & substantial healthcare ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... , June 23, 2016  In a startling report released ... failing their residents by lacking a comprehensive, proven plan to eliminate ... a definitive ranking of how states are tackling the worst drug ... only four states – Kentucky , ... Vermont . Of the 28 failing states, three – ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: