Welcome! This blog contains research & information on lifestyle, nutrition and health for those with MS, as well as continuing information on the understanding of the endothelium and heart-brain connection. This blog is informative only--all medical decisions should be discussed with your own physicians.

The posts are searchable---simply type in your topic of interest in the search box at the top left.

Almost all of MS research is initiated and funded by pharmaceutical companies. This maintains the EAE mouse model and the auto-immune paradigm of MS, and continues the 20 billion dollar a year MS treatment industry. But as we learn more about slowed blood flow, gray matter atrophy, and environmental links to MS progression and disability--all things the current drugs do not address--we're discovering more about how to help those with MS.

To learn how this journey began, read my first post from August, 2009. Be well! Joan

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

MS "breakthrough" research--On/Off Switch!!!

I am sick and tired of reading news stories about some "new MS breakthrough" which uses the EAE mouse model of MS and describes MS as an autoimmune disease.  It is as though the immunology research community believes that if they just keep acting like they are busy discovering things (where they have been looking for 70 years and finding nothing about disease etiology) they can keep getting funding for their labs, and keep people with MS thinking there is momentum.

The latest in a sea of sameness is the Bristol University crap about an "on/off switch" for the immune response to MS.

Here's the full paper, published in Nature---for those who like to read published research, rather than press releases full of hyperbole and BS.


In reading the paper, we learn that this new "breakthrough" is remarkebly reminiscent of Copaxone treatment, in which killer T cells are said to be modulated to helpful T cells by means of exposing them to an antigen (in Copaxone's case, that's a mimic of the proteins found in myelin basic protein---glatiramer acetate.)  This particular "new breakthrough hope"  therapy is going after CD4+ T cells, using injected peptide epitopes, rather than intact antigens--which are said to be "more effective."

Again, all of the testing was done on the mouse model, EAE.  Not humans with MS.

As reviewed elsewhere23, 45, peptide epitopes targeting ​CD4+ T cells have distinct advantages over intact antigens, and yet the mechanism by which peptide therapy prevents and treats ongoing autoimmune and allergic diseases is poorly defined. Mucosal routes of administration have proven safe and effective in animal models of allergy and autoimmunity, but have not translated well to the clinic. Here we demonstrate that the s.c. route of administration is more effective than the i.n. route, with a 1,000-fold lower dose of antigen being effective for anergy induction when compared with previous studies17, 18. As noted17, the efficacy of tolerance induction and disease prevention depends on signal strength. In this study, all aspects of inflammatory T-cell function, including proliferation, inflammatory cytokine secretion and encephalitogenicity were suppressed, whereas the ability of cells to secrete ​IL-10 and suppress EAE increased in a dose-dependent manner. ​IL-10 clearly serves as a promising mediator of effective antigen-specific immunotherapy1, 12.

But muting or changing the inflammatory response of CD4 + T Cells isn't really explaining why they are there in the first place, or how come this exact same cellular response shows up in ischemic stroke, slowed cerebral blood flow and reperfusion injury in humans.

That's right!!  CD4+ T cells show up after stroke, ischemia, and reperfusion injury.  These cells are responding to slowed blood flow in the brain, or hypoperfusion.

Here are stroke and vascular researchers discussing CD4+ T cells and the immune reaction to stroke and vascular issues in published research.  Perhaps we should let them know that stroke or reperfusion injury is an autoimmune disease that can be turned on or off!

For instance, lymphocytes from stroke survivors show more activity against myelin than the lymphocytes from patients with multiple sclerosis. In addition, myelin-reactive T cells are found in higher numbers among patients with cerebrovascular disease. These data thus provide evidence that a cellular immune response to brain antigens occurs following stroke.

These findings indicate that CD4+ and CD8+ T lymphocytes, but not B lymphocytes, contribute to the inflammatory and thrombogenic responses, brain injury, and neurological deficit associated with experimental stroke

These findings implicate a CD4+ subset of T lymphocytes as key mediators of early inflammatory responses after renal  ischemic reperfusion  injury. 


I have a novel suggestion for researchers---why not look at the connection of MS to stroke, the vascular endothelium, CCSVI and reperfusion injury?  Why not understand this cellular response in non "auto-immune" diseases?

Now that would be a REAL breakthrough,


  1. yes - there is definitely a fundamental problem in MS Research -

    'No wonder Dr Kurtzke once warned that prescribing MS drugs is like shooting arrows into a dense fog'

    Please see Dr Schelling's response to the Lublin et al paper which recently announced some 'new' MS definitions - just pharma friendly variations of the 1965 definitions… they are happy in their own imaginary world and certainly don't want to understand anything which IS actually disease specific about MS… the irony of Lublin et al admitting there is no specific biological marker they can use to distinguish between the different 'types' of MS is breathtaking given the toxins they are happy to prescribe…. Interesting to see Lublin's co-authors have been amongst the harshest critics of vascular research in MS


    1. Thanks for that link, Alison! Yes, Dr. Schelling is our conscience...he has been calling out the Emperor's lack of a biomarker for decades. I'm so glad we can all rally around his message and give it more volume. THANK YOU for all your hard work. Stay strong, stay healthy. J

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  3. Its important to be aware of latest research showing how MS is related to how well the CSF flows, particularly in the cervical neck area:
    MS is directly related to CSF flow. “Significantly decreased CSF net flow was detected in MS patients, CSF flow dynamics are altered in MS patients”


    In the first video, you can see Dr. Raymond Damadian MD, the man who invented of MRI. Based on objective proof and seeing hundreds of patients improve, he claims Upper Cervical Care is critically important treatment for stopping many forms of MS, and even says that ALL neurodegenerative diseases respond well to this treatment. He refers patients to Dr. Scott Rosa the Chiro who uses his Xrays, MRIs and CSF readings, to then calculates to which degree the atlas bone is out of alignment, then systematically corrects it, with a the Atlas Orthogonal instrument.

    Pay attention to the pre/post MRIs showing the atlas rotation fixed and how the CSF flow improves post adjustment.

    In this second video, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7ENXw4ECwPg
    Dr. Raymond Damadian MD shows research where patients with epilepsy, Migraines, and MS, see remarkable improvements. He introduces the medical doctors to the atlas orthogonal instrument at 14:03 min mark and plugs chiropractic the entire time, even saying its more helpful than any medical intervention. He recommends everyone with signs of M.S. see an Upper Cervical specialist.

    Here is Dr. Raymond Damadian’s original study of 8 MS patients, all of which saw significant improvements in their health is documented here.

    1. Hi Harrison--
      Not sure how long you've been following the blog, but I've been writing about upper cervical, Dr. Damadian and CSF flow for several years. I hope you will read the posts I link below. http://ccsviinms.blogspot.com/2013/03/cerebrospinal-fluid-csf-and-ccsvi-march.html

      I wrote up the first report of the Bologna conference in 2009 (I know Dr. Zamboni and Dr. Schelling quite well, and have spent time with them at many ISNVD conferences) and discussed the revelation of normal pressure hydrocephalus and MS similarities made by Dr. Frohman at that very first conference. http://ccsviinms.blogspot.com/2012/11/normal-pressure-hydrocephalus-once.html

      Of course it is an important part of MS-- Venous return and CSF pressure are intimately related. This blog post is specifically discussing the use of the EAE model of MS. Here are some of my writings on CSF flow research. You can always search the blog by using the search function at the top left hand corner. There are many factors involved in healthy cerebral perfusion, and CSF is one important part. Thank you for your passion and concern--I hope you are doing well! Joan

    2. Im so glad to have run into your blog. I am looking forward to reading the links you posted.

      I came across your blog via this page which someone linked. I wasn't aware you had previously written on Upper Cervical Chiropractic and CSF flow etc.

      Your insight into various topics and MS is really awesome! Chiropractic is only a piece, but because its so often glossed over, i thought i'd link some info here.

      glad to meet you!

    3. You are absolutely right about chiropractic care being overlooked as part of the MS puzzle, Harrison. If you haven't already, check out the blog of Dr. Michael Flanagan, author of "The Downside of Upright Posture." He is an incredible resource! We're getting there--and finding more answers for people with MS and neurodegenerative disease -outside of the EAE paradigm. There's hope and healing ahead. My husband is now 7 1/2 years past his MS diagnosis, with no MS progression, healing of gray matter, and relief in most symptoms. We want others to have the same opportunity! all best, Joan http://www.upright-health.com/Upright-Doctor-book.html

  4. Also interesting is that a different doctor in Italy, Dr. Mandolesi MD is finishing up a 500 person study on MS, which will be released in a European Vascular medical journal in the Fall of 2014. He is known as an expert in MS research, having conducted many published medical studies, He is seeing 50% improvement for those with MS who have a misalignment in their C1. "Working with MS is my specialty... "We have scientific proof that Upper Cervical correction is effective. The preliminary results of our research on how Upper Cervical Care can help patients with MS are very positive," Dr. Mandolesi MD, says.

    "We think that Upper Cervical Care can improve the hemodynamic conditions and clinical symptoms of multiple sclerosis patients," Mandolesi said. The preliminary reports show that the entire sample of multiple sclerosis patients has vascular lesions, particularly on vertebral veins; that is the pathway of our interest, along with a misalignment of the C1 (atlas vertebra. This supports our theory of there being a mechanical postural vascular block in MS Patients with chronic cerbrospinal venous insufficiency (CCSVI)

    "MS patients under Upper Cervical Care showed an average reduction of more than 50% of the symptoms attributed to the diseases, verified by both X-rays and clinical results, and that based on theses findings, it is our belief that Upper Cervical Care should be a primary treatment of the mechanical cause of MS and that there is evidence that Upper Cervical Care can prevent the disease."
    “The Upper Cervical Multiple Sclerosis Research Study is complete and the findings are phenomenal and the results, according to lead researchers, Drs. Marceca and Mandolesi, will change the way the entire world treats M.S.”

    > Eighty-One Patients with Multiple Sclerosis and Parkinson’s Disease Undergoing Upper Cervical Chiropractic Care to Correct Vertebral Subluxation
    Upper cervical subluxations were found in all 81 cases. After administering treatment to correct their upper cervical injuries, 40 of 44 (91%) MS cases and 34 of 37 (92%) PD cases showed symptomatic improvement and no further disease progression during the care period.

  5. Malpositioned Cervical Vertebrae causing CCSVI in some cases:

    “Our data indicate that extravascular compression of the extracranial venous pathway is frequent in multiple sclerosis patients with chronic cerebrospinal venous insufficiency, and that it is mainly due to compression caused by transverse processus of cervical vertebrae.”


    > The passage from the supine to upright position shows 11 double increase of compressions. The homo-lateral head rotation to the investigated vessel shows a significant increase of the extrinsic compressions from Y to 9 times compared to contralateral side rotation.

    The altered posture with dislocation of Cl-C2 with or without associated rotation of the [rest of the] cervical vertebrae… blocking the discharge of the vertebral veins;
    “Our preliminary results by manipulative treatments in patients with compressive syndromes of the internal jugular veins and/or vertebral veins associated with C1-C2 misalignment has been positive and encourages us to practice a upright TC scanner assessment of the first two cervical vertebrae in these patients with CCSVI. Our current effort is the identification of specific postural tests that allow us to put [the] right indications either physiotherapeutic [or] surgical in patients with venous compression syndromes of the veins draining the brain.”

    Although the study doesn’t specifically say Upper Cervical, it says, “manipulative treatments” which we know is Upper Cervical chiropractic, because the researchers have said so. His relationship with Dr. Drury DC, was instrumental in coming up with the ideas for this type of treatment in the first place and even conduct studies about the C1-C2 vertebrae’s position and how it effects physiology. You can read more in Dr Drury’s book, or show up to next time he speaks at an Upper Cervical Chiropractic convention, like the Upper Cervical Evolution where he is a keynote speaker every year.

    –Sandro Mandolesi Study on CCSVI https://docs.google.com/file/d/0ByQxHvfFDk04bUNZVU5Ic2tIV0k/edit?pli=1

    Upper Cervical Chiropractors are helping countless MS patients. of course not everyone gets crazy amazing results but more do than not.

    Heck, when the Inventor of the MRI has demonstrated MS patients improving this well, with objective measures, whats preventing the entire MS community from going to get their atlas checked by a specialist? less than 1% of chiropractors are authorized to do NUCCA, Atlas/Advanced Orthogonal, or Blair, etc. these are all similar techniques of how to address the twisted atlas bone. get it checked

    1. Internationally acclaimed scientist Paolo Zamboni, MD, presented Franz A. Schelling, MD, with the International Society for NeuroVascular Disease’s (ISNVD) prestigious gold award.

      Franz A. Schelling recommends Upper Cervical care,

      I was able to connect with Dr. Franz Schelling. He provided the MS venous flow mechanism theory and supporting research Dr. Zamboni used in developing the Liberation procedure. Dr. Zamboni awarded Dr. Schelling the ISNVD Gold Medal for his contribution to CCSVI Research. Dr. Schelling sent an MS patient to Dr. Hasick for NUCCA care. He believes the Atlas misalignment effects the veins as a mechanism, stating the CSF flow plays a minor role. Dr. Schelling considers NUCCA ideal for those patients with high upper cervical venous restrictions, where it is impractical and dangerous to use balloon venoplasty or insert stents.

      The President of the CCSVI Alliance, Sharon Richardson, is very interested in NUCCA care thanks to Dr. Mike Flanagan and internet anecdotes. Two years post Liberation, she now suffers foot drop, unrelieved by standard chiropractic care (Activator). Dr. Michael Dake from Stanford performed Sharon's procedure. Her good friend, who was also liberated by Dr. Dake, reports great success in receiving NUCCA care from a certified practitioner. Her friend has not felt this well in many years, even after her Liberation procedure. As a result, Dr. Dake is very curious and shows interest in collaboration. Ms. Richardson lives in Denver where there are no certified Doctors.

      by fraser » Thu Aug 02, 2012 4:17 pm
      Wanted to share some info on NUCCA (National Upper Cervical Chiropractic Association)…a specialized form of chiropractic treatment. It's extremely gentle (no neck cracking!), and my husband has had amazing results (diagnosed with PPMS in 2009, and has also had CCSVI treatment in Poland in 2010). There only seems to be one doctor in Toronto that's trained in it, so we've been going there…an excellent clinic. We heard about it from a Canadian doctor who we've been consulting with (who also has MS). After treatment my husband has had better mental clarity, balance, less dizzy and is sleeping better, and he's only had 3 adjustments. He had a huge misalignment, which can cause nerve issues, and other MS like symptoms. Atlas Orthogonal is what Montel Williams has been doing…same thing only they use an instrument to realign instead of a manual approach. I won't say anymore since the videos do a better job of explaining how it works.

      Life Balance is the clinic we go to in Toronto - we see Dr. Siqueira who you'll see in the video:
      This is an interesting testimonial that seems sincere:

  6. Thankyou Joan for all your hard work and enlightment

  7. you are welcome, Lynne! Thanks for your continued hard work and support. Too many people suffering, we need to get the word out there.

  8. There is a drug that has been taken by a few people that are MS patients, and it shows some benefits... when I asked my Dr. to prescribe some to me, he said their isn't enough research on this medication, but it's been approved by the FDA so what's the hold up here, the pharmaceutical(drug PIMPS) sales aren't getting enough for this drug!!!!