Designer Estrogen Identified As Potential MS Drug

The campaign of finding a cure for multiple sclerosis (MS) still rages on. But year after year, scientists and researchers are getting better in understanding this debilitating disorder and are getting closer and closer in finding that eventual cure.

Experts are finding new ways in trying to win the battle against MS and helping other people cope up and better handle the difficulties as well as the challenges that comes with the disease.

Multiple sclerosis is a disease that affects the central nervous system. It is a chronic, inflammatory disease that can cause symptoms such as muscle weakness, difficulties in speech and mobility and, in more severe cases, even cause disability.  The disease is believed to affect the ability of the neurons in the brain and the spinal cord to communicate to enable the brain to have normal control of the body.

The neurons ability to carry information and provide proper coordination with the brain and the spinal cord to enable normal functions seem to be affected when the myelin sheath, a protective layer of fatty insulation surrounding each neuron, is damaged.

This effect usually happens to people with multiple sclerosis. As the myelin sheath is gradually destroyed, it affects how the neurons can effectively carry, receive and transmit electrical signals which further leads to the gradual degeneration of the body’s central nervous system.

Although the cure for the debilitating disorder has yet to be found, researchers and experts on MS have discovered new grounds in trying to combat the disease. Recently, UCLA scientists have been able to show evidence that using a specific form of estrogen might be able to protect the brain from degeneration and yet not increase the risk of developing estrogen-induced cancers.

The study was done by giving laboratory mice with the animal equivalent of multiple sclerosis with a specific form of estrogen to prevent further brain degeneration. Although there are currently a number of medications that help treat the physical symptoms that come with multiple sclerosis, there hasn’t yet been a treatment found that will help prevent the disorder from causing further brain degeneration.

The new findings suggest that there is a potential in the future for a type of "designer estrogen" to be given to MS patients in order to prevent further brain degeneration caused by the disease.

This type of estrogen may also be used to fight other forms of brain degeneration caused by other diseases such as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, Lou Gehrig’s disease and other forms of spinal cord injuries. What makes this type of estrogen even more promising is that it does not increase the risk of cancers caused by the said hormone such as those cancers that affect the breast and the uterus in women.

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