The Immune Tolerance Network conducted a five-year trial on relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis patients. The HALT-MS trial was funded by National Institutes of Health’s Division, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID). The findings were released in February this year.
Multiple Sclerosis disease is a condition where the central nervous system is attacked by the immune system. The disease symptoms include difficulties in mobility and speech, fatigue, chronic pain, and weakness. The relapsing-remitting MS shows mild or no symptoms. The symptoms, however, often flare-up and the disease can become progressive with time. The patients chosen for the trial suffered from relapsing-remitting MS and showed severe neurological disability, inflammation, and relapses. The 24 patients were given a high dose immunosuppressive therapy. This process was then followed by a transplantation of the patients’ blood-forming stem cells. It is notable that the participants did not take other medications for the disease. The treatment is known as the immunosuppressive therapy and autologous hematopoietic cell transplant (HDIT/HCT). The trial results showed that the treatment provided relief to the patients. In fact, 69 percent of the patients did not report disability progression, new brain ulcers, or symptoms relapse. Some participants recovered their mobility, and the disease was stabilized.
The HDIT/HCT treatment works by resetting the immune system and removing the disease-causing cells. This process prevents disability progression and suppresses the disease. If more studies will report same results, then there is a new hope for patients ailing from the disease. This development will be beneficial for the patient whose condition doesn’t respond to current therapies.
About Dr. Shiva Gopal Vasishta
Dr. Shiva Gopal Vasishta is a highly competent Neurologist and Psychiatrist. He renders his medical services in Voorhees, New Jersey. Dr. Shiva is one of the talented and globally acclaimed medics who studied at esteemed Government Medical College Nagpur.
Dr. Shiva Gopal enrolled at Boston City Hospital for his residency program. His current practice is at the Eastern Neurodiagnostic Associates.