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Can Coffee Reduce Your Risk of MS?

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Drinking coffee may be associated with a lower risk of developing multiple sclerosis (MS), according to a study released today that will be presented at the American Academy of Neurology’s 67th Annual Meeting in Washington, DC, April 18 to 25, 2015.

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First “Humanized” Mouse Model of Sjögren’s Syndrome Opens Door to Study Other Autoimmune Diseases

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Despite the prevalence of Sjögren’s syndrome – an autoimmune disease most commonly known for causing dry eyes and mouth - a lack of knowledge about how the condition starts has stalled the development of new treatments. Researchers have now developed a specialized animal model of Sjögren’s that engrafts human cells into mice, allowing scientists to track various factors that affect disease development and discover potential new therapies.

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Exposure to Mercury, Seafood Associated with Risk Factor for Autoimmune Disease

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Mercury in seafood – even at low levels generally considered safe – was associated with disease risk factor.

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Signaling Pathway Helps Protect Healthy Tissue From Overly Active Immune Responses

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• Researchers have shown that the messenger protein IL-6, which is rapidly produced at high levels during an acute inflammatory form of kidney disease, potently dampens activation of tissue-destructive immune cells called macrophages. • The findings may have broad clinical implications because elevated IL-6 is observed in many different inflammatory diseases, and macrophages are often crucially involved in their pathogenesis.

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Seeing the Knee in a New Light: Fluorescent Probe Tracks Osteoarthritis Development

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A harmless fluorescent probe injected into a joint may make it easier to diagnose and monitor osteoarthritis, leading to better patient care. A new study led by biomedical researchers at Tufts University reports that such a probe successfully tracked the development of early to moderate osteoarthritis in male mice.

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Laying a Foundation for Treating ALS, Spinal Cord Injury

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Su-Chun Zhang, a professor of neuroscience and neurology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison Waisman Center, and his research team have published a unique model for learning more about the role of human astrocytes in the Journal of Clinical Investigation today. The findings may lay a foundation for the treatment of a number of neurodegenerative diseases, including ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis) and debilitating spinal cord injuries.

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Shared Symptoms of Chikungunya Virus, Rheumatoid Arthritis May Cloud Diagnosis

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A mosquito-borne virus that has spread to the Caribbean and Central and South America and has caused isolated infections in Florida often causes joint pain and swelling similar to that seen in patients with rheumatoid arthritis.

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Scientists Establish that Drug Candidates Can Block Pathway Associated with Cell Death in Parkinson’s Disease

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In a pair of related studies, scientists from the Florida campus of The Scripps Research Institute have shown their drug candidates can target biological pathways involved in the destruction of brain cells in Parkinson's disease.

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UAB Research Probes Molecular Basis of Rare Genetic Disorder

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The mutation and its functional effects that cause the genetic disorder Singleton-Merten Syndrome (SMS) has been described for the first time, by an international research team. SMS is now recognized as an autoimmune disorder.

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Tumor Suppressor Protein Plays Key Role in Maintaining Immune Balance

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St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital scientists have discovered that a protein widely known for suppressing tumor formation also helps prevent autoimmune diseases and other problems by putting the brakes on the immune response. The research was published recently online ahead of print in the scientific journal Nature Immunology.