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Monday, April 6, 2009
Best treatment for MS may depend on disease subtype
Information provided by: Stuart Schlossman of MS Views and News, Inc.
Animal studies by University of Michigan scientists suggest that people who experience the same clinical signs of multiple sclerosis (MS) may have different forms of the disease that require different kinds of treatment.
The results, if borne out in further studies, point to a time when doctors will be able to target specific inflammatory processes in the body and more effectively help MS patients, using available drugs and new ones in the pipeline.
Since the 1990s, the treatment picture has brightened for people with multiple sclerosis in its most common form, relapsing-remitting MS. Beta interferon drugs and glatiramer acetate (marketed as Copaxone) have proved effective at decreasing the attack rate and suppressing inflammatory plaque development in many patients with MS. Yet why the drugs help some patients, but not others, has remained a mystery.
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