Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a chronic inflammatory demyelinating disease of the central nervous system (CNS) characterized by encephalitogenic leukocyte infiltration and multifocal plaques of demyelination. Patients present with debilitating clinical sequelae including motor, sensory, and cognitive deficits. For the past 30 years, immune modulating treatments have entered the marketplace and continue to improve in limiting the frequency and severity of relapses, but no cure has been found and no drug has successfully stopped chronic progressive disease. Recent work focusing on the oligodendrocyte, the myelin-producing cell, has provided needed insight into the process of demyelination, the spontaneous ability of the CNS to regenerate, and the inevitable failure of remyelination. From this a number of promising molecular targets have been identified to protect oligodendrocytes and promote remyelination. Combining immunomodulatory therapy with strategies to protect oligodendrocytes from further degeneration and enhance remyelination presents a very real means to improve clinical outcome for chronic progressive patients in the near future. Here we lay out a combination therapy approach to treating MS and survey the current literature on promising drug candidates potentially capable of mediating oligodendrocyte protection and enhancing remyelination.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||11|
|State||Published - 2013|
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