A team of American researchers has found that vitamin D can be effective in combating multiple sclerosis (MS) as it can prevent damage-causing immune cells from entering the brain, a new study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences reveals.
The study has been conducted by researchers at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine who induced a rodent form of MS in a group of mice and simultaneously gave them a high dose of vitamin D and found no symptoms of the disease.
They also detected high levels of immune cells, known as T cells in the bloodstream of the mice but very few in their brains and spinal cords, while generally the cells are used to seek and destroy the fatty protein myelin in the brain.
"With this research, we learned vitamin D might be working not by altering the function of damaging immune cells but by preventing their journey into the brain. If we are right, and we can exploit Mother Nature's natural protective mechanism, an approach like this could be as effective as and safer than existing drugs that treat MS", lead researcher Anne Gocke said.