Genetics is a quickly growing area of medicine that has sparked thousands of headlines, and data from MURDOCK Study participants have made some of those headlines.
Genetics is the study of genes — a set of blueprints humans are born with that give people their unique qualities. Some genes determine eye color, some height, and others freckles or allergies. The role that genes play in causing illness has become a focus of research, including work by MURDOCK Study scientists like Dr. Simon Gregory, who leads the MURDOCK Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Study. The study of genes could lead to new treatment and prevention methods for many diseases.
Using data from MURDOCK MS Study participants, Gregory and his team showed that a certain gene may increase the risk of developing MS. Multiple sclerosis is a lifelong disease in which the nerves lose their insulation and stop working efficiently. This can cause numbness, fatigue, and sometimes even loss of vision and balance.
Published in the journal Cell in 2017, Gregory’s research marks a major step toward catching and treating MS early. His work would not be possible without the support and generosity of MURDOCK Study participants.
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