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Thyroid Hormone May Treat Multiple Sclerosis


Updated November 11, 2004



Updated November 11, 2004
In a study published the Nov 16, 2004 issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, researchers reported on studies that looked at use of thyroid hormone as a potential treatment for multiple sclerosis. The animal studies found that thyroid hormone might protect against further nerve damage and facilitate more rapid repair of damaged nerve fibers.

In particular, use of thyroid hormone during early nerve damage could help protect the important myelin sheath -- the insulation that surrounds neurons -- and create precursor cells prepared to form new myelin sheaths in damaged nerves.

Loss of myelin is the key problem in multiple sclerosis According to the researchers: "We suggest that thyroid hormone could have a role in potentiating reluctant myelination by inducing (precursor cells) to differentiate into myelinating (cells) during a specific phase of the disease."

SOURCE: Fernandez, M. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Nov. 16, 2004; vol 101: pp 16363-16368.


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