Blog | HemaCare

Multiple Sclerosis is Linked to a Signal that Provokes T Cells to Attack Nerve Tissue

Jan 9, 2017 12:00:10 AM / by Stacy Matthews Branch, DVM, PhD posted in Autoimmune Disorders, Dendritic Cells, nerve tissue, T Cells


Multiple sclerosis (MS) affects 2.5 million people worldwide and about 400,000 people in the U.S. alone. This neurological condition is an autoimmune disease caused by the attack of the body's own nerve tissue by the immune system. For MS, altered T cells attack the myelin sheath of nerve cells. The myelin sheath is a fatty cellular substance that is actually an extension of glial cells (the support cells of the nervous system). The myelin sheath, which is structured somewhat like a solenoid, is wrapped or coiled around some nerves of the body and functions to increase the speed of nerve impulses through the nerve cell. The destruction of this sheath is responsible for the various neurological symptoms caused by MS (vision problems, loss of balance, limb weakness, etc.).

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