Russian Scientists Develop Low-cost Method of Diagnosing Multiple Sclerosis

Researchers at the Krasnoyarsk Research Center of the Russian Academy of Sciences’ Siberian Department together with colleagues from the Institute of Basic Medical Research and Chemical Biology (Novosibirsk) and from the Krasnoyarsk State Medical University have developed a new method of diagnosing multiple sclerosis by conducting a blood test with the use of special proteins.

Blood tests will be performed with the use of aptamers – artificially synthesized proteins marked by another bioluminescent protein which starts to fluoresce if the aptamer binds up with the pathogenic antibody responsible for the development of multiple sclerosis, the Krasnoyarsk Research Center’s press service reported.

This method is simpler and less expensive than MRI scanning or the analysis of the spinal fluid,

the press service said.

The study indicates that 52% of the patients that tested positive did have multiple sclerosis. The negative outcome pointed to the absence of multiple sclerosis in 92% of the tested persons.

We think that after our test system is fine-tuned, we will be able to detect multiple sclerosis, monitor its progress and assess the efficacy of the therapies applied. Complicated and costly methods are being used today to detect the disease. Diagnosing the disease through blood tests is simpler, faster and less expensive,

Candidate of Biological Sciences Vasilisa Krasitskaya, who is a researcher at the Krasnoyarsk Research Center, was quoted as saying.

MRI scanning will remain the basic method of detecting the disease, while the new method will serve as a supplementary instrument applicable in massive health assessment checks. Early detection will help slow the disease and improve the patients’ quality of life, she said.
The study was sponsored by the Russian Foundation for Basic Research.

Multiple sclerosis is a severe incurable disorder of the nervous system involving the destruction of integral nerve cells, which causes a wide range of severe conditions from numbness to paralysis and blindness. Cell destruction is a slow-moving process, therefore the disease does not reveal itself for a long time. Multiple sclerosis mostly manifests itself in patients aged 15 to 40.

SOURCE: interfax.ru
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