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Science & Society | News | Researchers from the ICVS/3Bs and Hospital de Braga revealed that lipocalin-2 is involved in multiple sclerosis

Researchers from the ICVS/3Bs and Hospital de Braga revealed that lipocalin-2 is involved in multiple sclerosis

In a recently published work in Frontiers in Cellular Neuroscience, a team led by Profs Fernanda Marques and João Cerqueira reveals, using an animal model of multiple sclerosis, that lipocalin-2 levels increase in the initial phases of the disease and whenever there is a clinical relapse and decrease upon treatment of symptoms, both in the brain and in the fluid that surrounds it (CSF).  Importantly, they have also shown that lipocalin-2 levels are also elevated in the CSF of multiple sclerosis patients, which increases the clinical relevance of the findings. More recent studies by the team, not yet published, also suggest that, in patients, higher lipocalin-2 levels at the time of diagnosis predict a more aggressive disease course, which might led to more personalized treatments achieving higher efficacy with less side effects. Multiple sclerosis is an inflammatory disorder of the brain and spinal cord, chronic and progressive, with periods of neurological disability (relapses) alternating with periods of symptom remission. It affects mainly patients in the 3rd and 4th decades, where it is the second cause of neurological disability. Lipocalin-2 is a protein involved in innate responses to bacterial infections, although its role in other disorders has been increasingly recognized.

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