A study conducted by the US company Atara Biotherapeutics revealed that it is possible to slow down and even reverse some symptoms of multiple sclerosis using immune T cells. The test is preliminary and small and does not have a control group, but the results were still encouraging for clinicians.
Recruitment of participants began in 2017. Altogether, T cells (defense units) were collected from 24 donors infected with Epstein-Barr virus, which is responsible for mononucleosis, which appears to be associated with multiple sclerosis. Of these, 20 reported significant improvement or stabilization of symptoms after 1 year.
Scans also showed that some patients had improved nerve wear. However, the researchers acknowledge that some of the results may have been achieved due to the placebo effect.
The data was presented at a conference on March 22, but has not yet been peer-reviewed by the scientific community. However, the scientists said the results are encouraging. If confirmed, it would be the first natural treatment against multiple sclerosis, a disease that uses few effective medications.
A larger phase 2 trial with 80 people is already underway by Atara Biotherapeutics.
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