$1 Million Funding for Multiple Sclerosis Research

$1 Million Funding for Multiple Sclerosis Research

23 May 2013

Research into multiple sclerosis (MS) prevention and treatment will receive a boost, with the Australian Government to invest a further $1 million to assist Multiple Sclerosis Research Australia (MSRA) to continue its world class research.

Every year around 1,000 Australians, mostly in their twenties to forties and disproportionately women, are diagnosed with MS, Ms Plibersek said.

We have yet to find a cause and cure for this lifelong condition or a way to predict its progress, severity and specific symptoms.

However, very promising research is being done under the guidance of MSRA and the Government is very pleased to continue our support.

MS is a chronic disease which attacks the central nervous system the brain, spinal cord and optic nerves. It affects around 23,000 Australians and 2.5 million people internationally.

MSRA acts as a hub for Australian research, enabling national research collaborations into MS by many universities and medical research institutes around Australia and New Zealand.

Significant achievements have included a world-first MS prevention trial with Vitamin D intervention for early stage MS patients in Australia and New Zealand, and analysis of patient needs to improve service delivery for Australians with MS.

Researchers from Monash University also found a way to block MS nerve degeneration; and Adelaide University is investigating a possible new way of controlling the immune system in MS, Ms Plibersek said.

The funding will also enable continued scientific research into donated brain tissue at the MSRA Brain Bank at Sydney University, which also acts as a hub for different laboratories and the wider MS research community.

MSRA is the research arm of MS Australia, the national peak body for Australians living with MS.

The renewed funding coincides with MS Australias Kiss Goodbye to MS promotion during May, before World MS Day on 29 May.