Developing a drug to prevent relapse — A breakthrough drug for treatment of patients with relapsing forms of multiple sclerosis arose from a method developed by Dr. Elizabeth Wayner beginning in the late 1980s. Known as Tysabri® (Natalizumab), the drug uses an antibody — that is, a type of immune-system protein that binds exclusively to another protein — to prevent the inflammation associated with multiple sclerosis.
Tysabri may also prove beneficial for patients with other autoimmune diseases, such as lupus, Crohn disease and rheumatoid arthritis, as well as melanoma, a serious form of skin cancer. Learn more »
Using stem cell transplants to treat multiple sclerosis – Researchers are leading clinical trials to examine the feasibility of high-dose chemotherapy and stem-cell transplantation – the standard treatment for leukemia and other blood cancers – in treating severe forms of autoimmune diseases, including multiple sclerosis and scleroderma (also known as systemic sclerosis). With transplantation, it may be possible to deplete the reactive cells that are triggering the immune system to attack the body. The early results have been promising, prompting larger studies. Learn more »