MS is quite unpredictable because symptoms vary from person to person. Now, a simple noninvasive blood test can help predict which people with multiple sclerosis (MS) will get worse during the following year after diagnosis.
MS can be predicted when a person begins to experience the symptoms, MS can be discovered through a noninvasive blood test. It is good to know one's status as early as possible because MS can be treated effectively during its early stage. What doctors look for during a blood test is a biomarker called neurofilament light chain, a nerve protein that can be detected in the blood when nerve cells die.
Dr Ali Manouchehrinia, PhD, of the Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm, Sweden led a group of researchers in conducting the first-ever study that proves that blood test is effective in the early detection of MS. The study was conducted with more than 4000 people with MS and over 1,000 people without MS. The researchers took samples of level of the biomarker in the blood from everyone who participated in the study, the researchers looked at whether people with high levels of the protein were more likely to develop a worsening disability. The researchers spent up to 5 years on the study, the study revealed that people with MS had an average of 11.4 picograms per milliliter (pg/ml) of the nerve protein in their blood compared to an average of 7.5 pg/ml for the people without MS. People with disabilities have high levels of protein, around 40% to 70% and they are more likely to have worsening disabilities during the next year than those with low levels of the protein.
The study revealed that the level of proteins measured through the blood test for MS may help predict how the disease will develop. It could also be used to monitor the effectiveness of MS treatments.