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MS Article

Is Multiple Sclerosis

Genetic or not?

Multiple Sclerosis Genetics

The overall medical community has been considering if there may be a genetic factor that can contribute to the presence of Multiple Sclerosis in the body.

The MS Research, that is being pursued involves a broad range of the possible causes of Multiple Sclerosis, including looking into determining if there a particular gene or gene sequence that can be identified as a major factor in determining the degree of the number of cases of Multiple Sclerosis that are showing up on a continually increasing number in more countries around the world.

MS nerve damage is often the result in the majority of cases of Multiple Sclerosis, but it has not been determine yet if genetics determines how severe the next generation in each family that has a history of Multiple Sclerosis will become.  As more clinical studies are being performed in many different ways for people with Multiple Sclerosis, perhaps more trends will be seen that will help researchers and doctors to understand more about Multiple Sclerosis and its causes that will help speed up the process of finding a cure for MS. 

Multiple Sclerosis Genetic Link
 According to Professor George Jelinek, MD, (who was also diagnosed with MS himself) in his book, Taking Charge of Multiple Sclerosis, he states "we now know that there are resulting genetic links with MS.  An example would be in the case of identical twins. When it comes to identical twins, where one of these twins is known to have MS, the other twin has a 300 times greater risk of developing MS.  A first degree relative, such as the son of a mother with MS, has a 20-40 times greater risk of developing the disease than someone who does not have such a relative. "

MS and pregnancy

Based on how genetics work, when a woman with MS is pregnant, during the pregnancy any damage to the mother's chromosomes have a much higher probability of influencing the type of damage that can be replicated in the baby's chromosomes, which can be passed on to the baby. If generation after generation passes on the damaged genes, then yes, MS can become a Multiple Sclerosis genetic disorder.

I remember seeing a program on television within the 2 or 3 years, where disorders that display a genetic link in passing the disorder on from one generation to another was studied further to determine if we are "stuck" with what is found to be in our family tree. An interesting conclusion was found by the end of the program.  The program was on the PBS station (Public Broadcasting Service).

In this particular study, several pairs of identical twins of varying ages (from 8 t 82 years of age) were studied.  Of the identical twins that were in this study, one was diagnosed with a more extreme disease, like cancer or diabetes, and the other was not.  The genes of identical twins are almost the same, initially, after they are born.

It was found during this particular study that the identical twin that didn't display a major disease had some type of protein that seemed to shield them from coming down with the possible genetic disorder.  Somehow there are factors that "turn on" or "turn off" the genes that can prevent the damaged genes from determining if a person will get the disorder.  Suspected factors that may influence the "on" or "off" switch for the genetic factor are thought to include diet, environmental factors, life style habits and other things that are not totally understood as of yet. 

So the possibility exists that we are not totally doomed by our genetics, but it does appear, from the study (Dr. George Jelinek states the findings from in his book (Dr. George Jelinek Taking control of Multiple Sclerosis), that we have a greater risk if a close relative (mother, father, brother or sister) has been given the Multiple Sclerosis diagnosis that we ourselves may also be diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis.  But rather than sitting around worrying about whether you may also be likely to be diagnosed with MS, it would be to your benefit to take some preventative measures to cleanse your body, reduce stress and reduce toxic exposures to chemicals and other toxins, in an attempt to help your body to function as well as it can.

The overall medical community used to think that any disease or disorder that became passed on from generation to generation was genetically based and any diseases or disorders that appeared to be genetically based in your own family line set you up for also ending up with the same or similar disease or disorder -- as if you are doomed to end up with the genetic disorder that was already determined to run heavily in your blood line of your ancestors. But this might not be the whole story as to what is really going on in our bodies.  It is beginning to appear that there is more to the explanation to a disorder or disease being genetically "set" in a family blood line.

An example would be cancer.  If your grandmother, aunt, mother or sister had breast cancer in the past, you were given a very high percentage of likelihood that you yourself would also have breast cancer (assuming you are female for our example).

More studies on identical twins, where they have the same genetic makeup, are being done, where it is appearing that there is a protein or other substances that can turn specific genetic sequences on or off like a light switch.  It is becoming more of a question of what factors influence our genetics, as to whether the damaged genes produce the same symptoms and disease in our bodies, as they have done in previous generations in the family tree.

This means that we are NOT necessarily doomed by the genetic disorders and diseases that appear to run in our family tree from one generation to the next. I think that this
applies in the case of 
Multiple Sclerosis.  I do
not think that we are doomed to become disabled and less functional from MS, to where we should resign ourselves to being unable to care for ourselves or our families or resign ourselves to ending up severely disable and in a wheelchair.

Further MS gene research is also being pursued to see if a specific gene sequence can be identified as being linked to the genetic predisposition of Multiple Sclerosis in a family tree, to determine if there may be a way to develop a better screening method for Multiple Sclerosis to possibly help slow the speed of the appearance of new cases of MS sent of MS.

Although more studies have been performed in the last 5 to 10 years examining the possibility of the genetic link in Multiple Sclerosis to examine if there is a history of Multiple Sclerosis within a family, if this affects each successive generation as to whether they have a higher risk factor of also being diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis.  

According to Professor George Jelinek, MD, in his book "Taking Control of Multiple Sclerosis", he states that 

If you have already been given the diagnosis of Multiple Sclerosis, there are some things that you can do to help to reduce the symptoms of MS.

In spite of the fact that a genetic link may play a role in developing Multiple  Sclerosis, it is beginning to appear that how severe the symptoms of MS can become can be influence by several factors. The degree of how severe our symptoms of MS can become or how severe our Multiple Sclerosis disability can
become because of the 
way that MS can
attack our bodies can be influenced by m include:

* Life style changes - reducing how we react
to stressful situations, changing the way we
think about the world around us and how we deal with ourselves and other people.

* Dietary changes - there are more different types of dietary changes that are  recommended for helping to reduce the symptoms of MS at this point - so diet does make a difference with MS. 

* Detoxifying and Alkalizing our bodies

* Learning to be kind to ourselves and others

* Getting adequate sleep every day - this is tougher with MS insomnia, that can often be present with many cases of MS

* Exercise -- as much as our bodies can handle.  There are many types of exercises that can be done by those that have MS that can help with reducing MS symptoms, including tai chi, qi gong, yoga, stretching and strengthening exercises (not strenuous exercising, but more gentle exercises like using small hand weights, using stretch bands and using a balance ball, as a few examples).  

* Meditation - finding ways to reduce stress can help tremendously in reducing the symptoms of MS in a large percentage of those that have been diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis.

and other ways to relax our nervous systems and help give our bodies what they need to help itself and start to repair the nerve damage -- or at least redevelop new neural pathways, where MS nerve damage or Multiple Sclerosis nerve damage has been caused previously and help to reduce MS symptoms.

Since MS research is still in the early stages of development, MS research is still working on understanding more about MS and the disease process.The medical community is hopeful that one day soon, a cure for Multiple Sclerosis will be found.

To find out more information about Multiple Sclerosis and about ways to help reduce your symptoms of MS/ complete the form below to subscribe to our FREE Multiple Sclerosis Report.

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