Researchers at CRCHUM, led by Professor Nathalie Arbor in neuroscience, are tracking the molecule responsible for this autoimmune disease, affecting more than 90,000 Canadians.
Did you know that more than 90,000 Canadians live in multiple sclerosis (MS)? This is more than the number of people living with HIV in the country. Still, it’s not widely talked about.
Nathalie Arbor and Catherine La Rochel, a researcher at the CHUM Research Center (CRCHUM), a professor of neuroscience at the University of Montreal, and a PhD. Alexandre Pratt, Pierre Duquette, and Marc Girard are tracking the molecules responsible for multiple sclerosis in the brain.
The cause of this autoimmune disease is still poorly understood, but scientists say that T cells, the white blood cells that cause the dysregulation of the immune system to activate the body’s defenses against infection, are healthy in the body’s brain. Knowing to “promote” attacking nerve tissue and the spinal cord.
The disease targets myelin, the protective coating that surrounds nerve fibers, causing inflammation and ultimately deterioration of the substance. It is essential for the transmission of nerve impulses. Multiple sclerosis causes vision, memory, balance, and motor problems of varying severity and duration.
May is MS Awareness Month of the Canadian MS Association, and to commemorate it, we outline the latest research done by Arbor and La Rochel on this chronic inflammatory disease.
Fragile immune balance
In their laboratory, two scientists always start their studies with observations made on the patient or its tissue before testing in an animal model. This approach sets them apart in the Canadian research scene.
In one of her recent studies, Arbor observed that patient T cells responded much more strongly to interleukin 15 (IL-15) than healthy control T cells.
IL-15, a protein produced by white blood cells after infection or inflammation, increases T cell activation and proliferation and has pro-inflammatory properties.
When Arbor and her team injected IL-15 into mice with a disease similar to MS, they showed that the symptoms of the animal’s disease had worsened.
“This study provided access to blood samples from patients with advanced and relapsing-remitting MS, which is common to both forms of disease that may be the target of therapeutic intervention. I was able to show that there is a scientific mechanism. “
In the second study, Arbor focused on another protein, interleukin 27 (IL-27). Its anti-inflammatory properties have already been demonstrated in animal models, reducing the severity of the disease in mice.
But human biology is more complicated. Arbor saw an increased presence of IL-27 in the brains of patients who died of MS, but its anti-inflammatory effect on the patient’s T cells was compared to that observed in healthy donors. It seems to be limited.
For Larochelle, a better understanding of changes in the human immune system will, in the long run, facilitate the development of personalized therapies that will allow patients to regain their immune balance and live asymptomatically. Let’s do it.
For over a decade, the work done by the basic research teams of Arbor, La Rochel and Pratt has gained international acclaim.
Beyond their expertise, their success is the strong collaboration between Dr. Marc Girard, a leading neurologist at CHUM’s MS Clinic, and Dr. Pierre Duquette, a recipient of the CRCHUM Bâtisseur Award, and a wealth of biobanks. Based on a sample.
“Today, high-quality data from MS clinics and research activities contributes to a large international database containing data on more than 60,000 patients,” says Larochelle. “This can contribute to a global effort to help clinicians in Canada and around the world understand how to choose the right treatment for the right patient at the right time.
Arbor and Prat are also co-directors of the neuroimmunology component of the CanProCo study, a prospective Canadian cohort study that tracks disease progression in patients with multiple sclerosis for five years. In Canada only 5 sites are participating in the survey and in Quebec only 1 is CHUM.
University of Montreal: Multiple Sclerosis: Its Progression-India Education | Latest Education News India | Global Education News
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