Researchers from the University of Adelaide have identified a key protein on the surface of cells that controls the immune attack in MS. The research focuses on the movement of immune cells into the brain and spinal cord in MS, the vital first stage before immune cells attack myelin. Until now, it was thought that a molecule known as CCR6 on the surface of the immune cells controlled this movement.
This new research, published in the prestigious medical journal Nature Communications, has revealed a different molecule called CCR2 is responsible for the entry of the attacking immune cells into the brain and spinal cord at later chronic stages of disease. Whereas CCR6, on the other hand, is responsible for regulating other immune cells at earlier stages of the disease, but does not seem to take part in the direct attack on myelin in the brain.
For more information on this research visit MS Research Australia