MS Researchers Watch as Myelin-producing Cells Migrate and Mature

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Researchers have described the mechanisms by which cell precursors of oligodendrocytes — the cells responsible for the generation of myelin in the central nervous system — migrate from their birthplace to their workplace during brain and spinal cord development, and begin to mature and wrap about nerve fibers. The finding, the authors said, may have the potential to aid migration and maturation, and so “significantly reduce” the severity of relapses in multiple sclerosis (MS) patients.

Myelin is a lipidic material that protects nerve fibers in the central and peripheral nervous system. Myelination, the formation of the myelin protection in neurons, is carried out by oligodendrocytes in the central nervous system (CNS). Understating the formation of oligodendrocyte cells is of considerable importance, as MS development is deeply connected to damage done to the protective myelin sheaths during immune system attacks, eventually leading to neuron death.

The research article, “Oligodendrocyte precursors migrate along vasculature in the developing nervous system,” was published in the journal Science.

Oligodendrocytes develop from oligodendrocyte precursor cells (OPCs) that first, as other precursor cells during brain development, migrate extensively. However, the mechanism of migration, including the substrate that allows them to migrate, has long remained elusive.

56a224a2138f3While studying how OPCs differentiate into a mature form, the researchers discovered that the cells use the vasculature as a physical substrate for migration. Previous research has shown that the Wnt signaling pathway inhibits the transformation of immature cells into mature cells, until they are in the correct place to form myelin.

The researchers induced constant high levels of Wnt in mice, and observed that the OPCs couldn’t migrate properly and appeared to become stuck to blood vessels. This was confirmed by live imaging of migrating OPCs in the developing brains of untreated mice and also in human brain tissue, where researchers observed the migrating OPCs crawling along the blood vessels and “jumping” from one blood vessel to the other.

They also demonstrated that if the Wnt signaling pathway was blocked, the precursor cells fall off the brain vasculature, suggesting that Wnt signaling works to keep the cells associated with vessels during migration.

“It seems like Wnt signalling plays a dual role to coordinate the timing of migration and differentiation,” the study’s lead author, Dr. Stephen Fancy, assistant professor of pediatrics and neurology in UC San Francisco School of Medicine, said in a press release. “First it holds them in their immature form as they travel along the blood vessels, and then when they reach their destination it turns itself off to let them off their climbing frame and begin maturing.”

The researchers theorize that finding a way to conduct oligodendrocytes to the location of myelin damage observed in MS has the potential to reduce the severity and frequency of relapses suffered by MS patients.

“There are a number of drugs now that can help reduce the initial demyelination in MS, but there is currently no therapy to aid remyelination,” Dr. Fancy said. “This is one of those cases where by making discoveries about brain development, we stand to learn a lot about disease as well.”

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  1. Shasha says:

    NO gluten/dairy/soy/sugar/GMO…vitamins/good oils/minerals…probiotic…LDN..detoxing help my MS.

    Vit B12 methylcobalamin shot may help remyelinate the brain. Raising oxygen in the brain helps my MS. The Celiac diet help my intestines absorb more nutrients/fat and rebuilds cells to burn oxygen. Gluten may make antibodies to the thyroid lowering mitochondria speed/oxygen burning. Progesterone/Vit B12 helps bones and maybe myelin. Progesterone helps get thyroid medicine into cells and helps the immune system. MS people are ok during pregnancy, but after pregnancy progesterone from the umblical cord drops off fast. Estriol helps get more circulation in my brain and testosterone lowers the swelling it causes and more.
    Fish oil, blueberries, lecithin help my brain. Exercise may help make more mitochondria/neurons. EDTA/DMPS IV chelations help unclog blood vessels which help oxygen as it removes Ca plaques that may block blood vessels. The IV chelation also lowers blood sugar/swelling/inflammation/removes heavy metals which block thyroid/chemical reactions/helps hemoglobin carry oxygen.
    B vitamins may help nerves. 5000mcg of biotin helps circulation. Vit B1 helps the citric acid cycle in the mitochondria. MTHF folate helps circulation. All the B vitamins are important.
    Give the body/brain the raw materials it needs in food/supplements/detox chemicals and heavy metals it may work properly.
    MS people may also get Lyme/viruses etc eventually since their immune system is down. Lyme may turn off the immune system and bore through the brain/muscles. Herbals..not antibiotics may help that. Antibiotics may hurt the gut lining/lower the immune system and hurt mitochondria.
    Some MS people were Celiac..never got that help or thyroid help and got bed sores due to low oxygen and got antibiotics and died. Healing the root cause of the MS helps heal the MS.
    Learning about the brain is neat. Thanks for the article!

    • Shasha says:

      MS that comes and goes still has some myelin that can come back/regrow etc. It maybe harder if all myelin is gone. MS that comes and goes maybe due to eating gluten/dairy/soy/sugar/GMO/saturated fat/heated oils…differently each day. Progessive MS maybe due to eating these foods daily or also add Lyme to it. LDN may help MS fast.

      This is what I do. I can’t cheat or skip things:
      No gluten/dairy/soy/sugar/GMO and vitamins/good oils, LDN and detoxing help me. Vit D3 5000IU, zinc 50mg if detoxing, 2000mg fish oil , 20000mg evening primrose oil. 2000 mg lecithin, Phosphatidylserine/DMAE, krill oil, CLA, Coenzyme Q10, Rhodiola, Mg citrate 400mg, Vit C, 5000mcg of biotin, Nature’s Plus- Source of life multiple, HCl and enzymes with meals, dairy free probiotic, Vit B12 methylcobalamin shot/spray/under the tongue kind/intrinsic factor kind, MTHF folate, coenyzme Q10, rhodiola, may help brain/body/thyroid/depression/immune system and more. Gluten is wheat/barley/rye..oats may act like gluten with avenin. GMO corn/soy/canola oil may hurt. Amour thyroid maybe needed since gluten may made antibodies to the thyroid. Coenzymated B vitamins far from synthetic kind make make me calm.

      Sunlight (helps the immune system and helps to heal the gut lining),exercise, organic food, good water..not tap water, cooking by scratch pure food….. no food in a box/bag/premade/label/restaurant which may help avoid hidden gluten. Certified gluten free food may have 20ppm of gluten…too much. Nuts not sold in the shell/meat basting/some spices may have hidden gluten and lotion/make up etc. One restaurant cooks special for me…rice/veg/tea/extra mushrooms (no meat since the woks may have MSG/gluten in them).

      EDTA/DMPS IV chelations from an Alternative doctor, 600mg of cilantro, organic sulfur, Now brand- Detox support, Far Infrared Sauna and more may help detox. Hair tests show good minerals and heavy metals. Heavy metals can block thyroid and other chemical reactions in the body/brain.

      LDN may help block hidden gluten/heal the gut lining and help the immune system, but the Celiac diet is still needed. 100% no hidden or microscopic gluten may help. Cutting back on gluten or cheating by eating gluten hurts the immune system. It may take 1 1/2 months to heal the gut lining after getting hidden gluten.

      Amour thyroid has some T3 and Calcitonin. Synthroid is only T4..may not convert to T3. Zn/Se/enough iron/strong probiotic may help convert T4 to T3 for thyroid.

      Alternative doctors/chiropractors/acupuncturists and more may help with health/vitamins etc.

      Cancer maybe due to Celiac. No gluten/dairy/soy/sugar/GMO…vitamins/good oils/minerals…probiotic…LDN..detoxing…zinc, fish oil, Vit D3, Vit C, Mg and more may help the immune system/oxygen/pH etc. Tests may not work to diagnose Celiac.

      Low oxygen in the brain may cause depression/anxiety/obsessing/no sleep/panic/suicidal thoughts due to Celiac. Arthritis may be also due to Celiac which may cause swelling/inflammation/lower nutrients absorbed in intestines then cells are not made right to work right to burn oxygen. No gluten/dairy/soy/sugar/GMO…vitamins/good oils/minerals….probiotics…LDN..detoxing may help depression/arthritis and much more.

      Longer version:

      Best wishes.

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