For years people diagnosed with multiple sclerosis were told the same thing – there is no cure. Now this platitude could be changing. A scientist might be on the verge of curing the autoimmune condition that affects 2.3 million people all over the globe. Dr. Su Metcalfe is the mastermind behind this ground-breaking cure. And she thinks she has the secret to stop the condition which assaults brain and spinal cord cells. This means her cure could stop the physical and mental symptoms including blindness and muscle weakness. If Dr. Metcalfe has the cure to multiple sclerosis, millions who were told they had no hope can finally have hope again. Learn more below!
Although there is no cure yet, Dr. Metcalfe and her company LIFNano are confident they can change that.
“Some people get progressive MS, so go straight to the severe form of the disease, but the majority have a relapsing or remitting version,” she says in an interview with Matt Gooding of Cambridge News.
“It can start from the age of 30, and there’s no cure, so all you can do is suppress the immune response, but the drugs that do that have side effects, and you can’t repair the brain. The cost of those drugs is very high, and in the UK there are a lot of people who don’t get treated at all.”
Because of Dr. Metcalfe’s relentless pursuit of a better future, a cure for multiple sclerosis could be in the cards. How did she do it? She combined one of the human body’s most complicated functions with cutting-edge technology. The naturally occurring part of her cure is the stem cell particle identified as LIF. She was working at the university department of surgeon when she had her epiphany.
“I was looking to see what controls the immune response and stops it auto-attacking us,” she explains.
“I discovered a small binary switch, controlled by a LIF, which regulates inside the immune cell itself. LIF is able to control the cell to ensure it doesn’t attack your own body but then releases the attack when needed.
“That LIF, in addition to regulating and protecting us against attack, also plays a major role in keeping the brain and spinal cord healthy. In fact it plays a major role in tissue repair generally, turning on stem cells that are naturally occurring in the body, making it a natural regenerative medicine, but also plays a big part in repairing the brain when it’s been damaged.
“So I thought, this is fantastic. We can treat auto-immune disease, and we’ve got something to treat MS, which attacks both the brain and the spinal cord. So you have a double whammy that can stop and reverse the auto-immunity, and also repair the damage caused in the brain.”
Although her hopes are ambitious, she hopes to have a cure in a few years.
“The 2020 date is ambitious, but with the funding we’ve got and the funding we’re hoping to raise, it should be possible,” says Dr. Metcalfe.
But once she cures MS, she has her sights set on other big diseases.
“Psoriasis is high up on our list, and diabetes is another. Downstream there are all the dementias, because a LIF is a major health factor for the brain. So if we can get it into the brain we can start protecting against dementia.”