Findings could help repair MS patients' bodies

December 6, 2010 1:56:24 PM PST
Scientists say there may be a way to prompt the body of multiple sclerosis patients to repair itself.

There's new research in the journal Nature Neuroscience about a bio-chemical "switch" that helps stem cells in the brain fix injured nerves.

So far studies have only been on lab animals.

But. researchers have identified how to help cells regenerate myelin sheath. which is needed to protect nerve fibers.

If the same mechanism works in people, it could lead to drugs that halt or even reverse the disease.

MS is caused by a defect in the immune system which causes the body to attack the protective covering of nerve cells.