Sunday, August 14, 2005

Research links MS to viral infection

A new study by Scottish researchers shows evidence that the neurological disease multiple sclerosis (MS) could be linked to a viral infection. While Scotland has the highest prevalence of MS in the world, the exact factors which lead to its development still remain a mystery. A combination of hereditary and environmental factors are thought to be the likeliest explanation. Clusters of MS have previously been noted in certain areas, including the Faroe Islands, Orkney and Shetland. Researchers at Dundee University used a comprehensive register which recorded MS cases in Tayside over three decades to examine whether similar outbreaks would appear in a region where there was no prior knowledge of high incidences of the disease. The study found peaks of MS occurring in both certain years and in geographical locations, which scientists claim supports the idea that a virus is involved in the development of MS.

Link to story in Glasgow Sunday Herald.

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