Biomarker may predict MS years before onset

The presence in the bloodstream of antibodies against a specific protein may predict multiple sclerosis in healthy people who go on to develop the disease years later, German researchers claim.

Their small study of 16 healthy blood donors with a subsequent MS diagnosis showed that within two to nine months of the first clinical attack, seven of the pre-MS patients tested positive for KIR4.1 antibodies and a further two showed borderline activity.

This was in contrast with sixteen matched controls, all of whom tested negative for KIR4.1

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