Preprint Review Version 1 This version is not peer-reviewed

The Short and Long-term Effects of Pregnancy on Multiple Sclerosis and Experimental Autoimmune Encephalomyelitis

Version 1 : Received: 1 October 2018 / Approved: 1 October 2018 / Online: 1 October 2018 (14:00:35 CEST)

A peer-reviewed article of this Preprint also exists.

McCombe, P.A. The Short and Long-Term Effects of Pregnancy on Multiple Sclerosis and Experimental Autoimmune Encephalomyelitis. J. Clin. Med. 2018, 7, 494. McCombe, P.A. The Short and Long-Term Effects of Pregnancy on Multiple Sclerosis and Experimental Autoimmune Encephalomyelitis. J. Clin. Med. 2018, 7, 494.

Journal reference: J. Clin. Med. 2018, 7, 494
DOI: 10.3390/jcm7120494

Abstract

The role of pregnancy in multiple sclerosis (MS) is of importance because many patients with MS are young women in the childbearing age who require information to inform their reproductive decisions. Pregnancy is now well-known to be associated with fewer relapses of MS and reduced activity of autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE). However, in women with multiple sclerosis, this benefit is not always sufficient to protect against a rebound of disease activity if disease modulating therapy is ceased for pregnancy. There is reason to be concerned that use of assisted reproductive therapies can be associated with relapses of MS. It is thought that the beneficial effects of pregnancy are due to the pregnancy-associated changes in the maternal immune system. There is some evidence of this in human studies and studies of EAE. There is also evidence that having been pregnant leads to better long-term outcome of MS. The mechanism for this is not fully understood but it could result from epigenetic changes resulting from pregnancy or parenthood. Further studies of the mechanisms of the beneficial effects of pregnancy could provide information that might be used to produce new therapies.

Subject Areas

multiple sclerosis; pregnancy; epigenetics; experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis

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