More MS news articles for June 2001

Biological factors play role in multiple sclerosis

June 11, 2001

Biological factors may play role in how multiple sclerosis affects different subgroups of patients, a new study showed.

Researchers analyzed data from 18,000 MS patients regarding their history of disease relapse, the age of disease onset and the rate and severity of disability.

Study results indicate that the percentage of elderly men is higher in the group of non-relapsing patients than the group of relapsing patients. Among relapsing patients, older men are likely to be in a progressive stage with higher disability of mobility.

A greater proportion of older black individuals also have severe mobility disability.

It was found that younger women are more likely to develop the disease during childhood. This early onset may cause these women to report more fatigue and cognitive disability. Younger women have a higher percentage of familial MS as well.

“These results point to certain distinct biological characteristics and patterns of disease progression,” the authors noted. “Further research in this area will benefit diagnosis and effective treatments.”

The study was presented at the annual meeting of the Consortium of Multiple Sclerosis Centers.