In this study the researchers have shown that a particular immune cell, called the CD8 T cell, is deficient in MS’ers and contributes to the decreased immune response to EBV-infected B cells. Importantly, this worsens with age in MS’ers. They conclude that these ﬁndings have implications for the prevention and treatment of MS by controlling EBV infection.
Epub ahead of print: Pender et al. CD8 T cell deficiency impairs control of Epstein-Barr virus and worsens with age in multiple sclerosis. J Neurol Neurosurg Psychiatry. 2011 Jul 26.
“More data to support the strategy for testing an anti-viral agent that targets EBV in MS.”
“Anti-CD20 therapies, rituximab and ocrelizumab, that target B cells, may work via killing B cells infected with EBV. MS’ers should find this very exciting as ocrelizumab is phase 3 development for both primary progressive and relapsing-remitting MS.”
Extra Reading: CD8+ T cells, B cells, Epstein Barr Virus or EBV