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Sunday, February 18, 2018

Inhibiting Enzyme Can Reverse Myelin Damage, Improve Limb Function, Mouse Study Shows

Inhibiting Enzyme Can Reverse Myelin Damage, Improve Limb Function, Mouse Study Shows

Inhibiting an enzyme responsible for turning genes on and off can reverse damage to the myelin sheath that protects nerve cells, improving limb function, a multiple sclerosis-related study in mice shows.
The research, which involved mice with sciatic nerve damage rather than MS, was published in the journal Nature Medicine. Its title is “A histone deacetylase 3–dependent pathway delimits peripheral myelin growth and functional regeneration.
Damage to the myelin sheath leads to such MS-related problems as muscle stiffness and weakness, fatigue and pain.
A team at the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center and other researchers decided to look for compounds that could inhibit enzymes responsible for turning genes on and off.
Scientists dub the turning-on and -off process epigenetic regulation. The process does not interfere with a gene’s DNA sequence. It works by adding or removing an epigenetic mark from a DNA sequence — much like adding or removing a clothes pin .
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