UCLA researchers are recruiting people with multiple sclerosis to participate in a drug study, university officials said.
Thalidomide will be used to see if it reduces the production of tumor necrosis factor, a substance made by white blood cells to fight infection that is overabundant in multiple sclerosis patients, said Sharon Craig, a research nurse with the Department of Neurology.
The substance damages the myelin--a fatty material that insulates nerves--and leads to the degeneration of the central nervous system, she said.
An estimated 325,000 Americans suffer from the disease, which has no cure.
To be eligible for the study, patients must be at least 18 and able to walk 25 feet unaided. Women of child-bearing age may not participate.
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