A new study has explored the link between sunlight and multiple sclerosis (MS), hoping to eventually lead to a new form of treatment for the disease.
It has been known for over 30 years that MS is much more prevalent in higher-latitude countries, according to researchers at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Many wondered if the vitamin D produced by the body in response to sunlight was the root cause of this disparity, but a new study involving mice has indicated it is a certain wavelength of UV light that relieves the symptoms of MS.
Although the results are still experimental, report author Hector DeLuca is hopeful that further study will lead to a new treatment, either through exposure to UV light or through identifying what chemical the body produces in response to this UV light and administering it as a medicine.
MS is the most common disabling neurological condition in young adults, with around 100,000 people in the UK living with the condition, according to the MS Society.
The disease is caused by damage to myelin, a protective sheath surrounding nerve fibres in the central nervous system.
Read about Barchester expertise in offering multiple sclerosis support.