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Since MSRI’s inception, Dr. Greenstein has completed the renovation of the MSRI laboratory and has made significant progress in identifying the cause of MS as well as developing a potential treatment. MSRI needs your help to take Dr. Greenstein’s research to the next level. Please consider purchasing an engraved tile to be placed in the MSRI Laboratory. The tile may honor a loved one, friend or the many lives affected by this disabling disease. Help MSRI FIND the cause, STOP the progression, and CURE MS.

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We have worked on the JC virus for many months to understand how this virus travels to the brain causing PML (Progressive Multifocal Leukoencephalopathy) a serious and potentially fatal infection which complicates a number of MS therapies including Tysabri, Tecfidera, Gilenya, Ocrevus and Lemtrada. This infection also complicates treatments for other autoimmune diseases, transplantation and chemotherapy; and is seen in different immune deficiencies and HIV-AIDS. There are at least 15 monoclonal antibody treatments for different conditions which are complicated by the JC virus.

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Jeffrey I. Greenstein, M.D.
President, MSRI

November 2, 2017

Dear Friend and Supporter,

I am pleased to give you an update on one of our research projects.

We have worked on the JC virus for many months to understand how this virus travels to the brain causing PML (Progressive Multifocal Leukoencephalopathy) a serious and potentially fatal infection which complicates a number of MS therapies including Tysabri, Tecfidera, Gilenya, Ocrevus and Lemtrada. This infection also complicates treatments for other autoimmune diseases, transplantation and chemotherapy; and is seen in different immune deficiencies and HIV-AIDS. There are at least 15 monoclonal antibody treatments for different conditions which are complicated by the JC virus.

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Jeffrey I. Greenstein, M.D.
President, MSRI

December 8, 2016

Dear Friend and Supporter,

As we approach the end of the year, I would like to give you an update on our research efforts at MSRI.

Dr. Yuenmu Chen joined us in September, bringing with him a wealth of experience in Molecular Biology and Molecular Pharmacology. He has already made a major contribution to our capacity to perform experiments using both his expertise and technical ability. I look forward to a long-term working relationship to FIND, STOP, and CURE MS.

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“Sorry for the delay,” said Dr. Jeffrey Greenstein in a smooth, lightly accented baritone, when he came to the phone after a few minutes. “We just got so engrossed in a problem in the lab, I totally forgot the time.”

Losing track of time in the lab is probably not an unfamiliar experience for Greenstein, who has devoted his professional life to treating and researching multiple sclerosis and remains as passionately interested in it now as he was as a medical student in his native South Africa.

“MS is the prime disabling neurologic condition of young adults,” Greenstein said in explaining why he’s devoted his life to ultimately finding a cure for the disease, which affects as many as 2.5 million people worldwide. “More than any other disease, this is a disease that disables people in their productive years.”

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Most data supports that the major culprit in the formation of Multiple Sclerosis is the T-cell, which is a white blood cell that plays a key role in the immune system. These cells are named after the small organ – the thymus gland – where they are produced. In particular, MS is an immune-mediated autoimmune disease caused, in all probability, by a defect in regulatory T-cells: cells which regulate, or maintain order in the immune system, and suppress immune responses either by cell-cell contact or by secreting cytokines (proteins) to regulate the extent of potentially damaging inflammation to the tissues of the body. Unrestrained activation of effector T cells (normally controlled by regulatory T cells) allows them to produce pro-inflammatory cytokines and recruit other inflammatory immune cells to a tissue causing damage such as myelin injury as seen in MS. The consequence of inflammation in MS, in all probability, is a chronic neurodegenerative process called Progressive MS, which is an additional level of complexity that is being intensively investigated.

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FIND, STOP, CURE MS