MS awareness month is right around the corner again and in light of that, I thought I'd point to some of the latest research that's bubbling around MS circles.
A foodbourne toxin may trigger MSData presented at a meeting of the American Society for Microbiology adds to growing evidence that suggests a toxin produced by the bacterium Clostridium perfringens [seriously, say that 3 times, I had to look it up twice just to spell it] — commonly found on raw meat and poultry — appears to attack the same cells that are targeted in MS. It's an interesting link that is inspiring further research. The trigger is still unknown and the theories include everything from environmental metal (from dentistry metals to mercury in fish) to high salt diets or Epstein-Barr virus.
Vitamin D can slow the progression of MSAs mentioned here, researchers at Harvard found that having high vitamin D serum levels at early stages of MS tended to reduce disease activity and progression.
Stem cell research is sowing seeds for hopeThe idea of blasting my current immune system before introducing stem cells isn't all that appealing to me (yet?) but it's one of the few treatments shown to help those with more aggressive forms of MS than I have. Nerventra, coming from Teva, is also showing some promise.
…and back on the farm, my folks stayed for a lovely 10 days and are now visiting with my aunt before heading home. It's amazing how much of a challenge it is to stick to my regular rest/exercise/nutrition routines when we have company, but I did okay. Maybe a few more hops than usual. I can usually manage to control any food temptation but it's hard to resist the siren song of a cold beer.
As I mentioned above, May is MS awareness month, and I've started a small campaign for MS Walk pledges. I'm at my initial goal already, which is amazing and reinforces the support I already feel from family and friends. I am fortunate enough to be able to do this walk every year and may try to drag some friends along again this time. I realize some are hesitant to donate to larger organizations and I know a lot of funding goes astray to pay employees and fund marketing, but in the end, the MS Society does good work and is there when we need it. Thank you to those who have donated so far or have dropped me a personal note of support. Here's hoping the universe is listening and all that karma comes back your way.