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Why multiple sclerosis is more common in women

ANI| Updated: May 12, 2014, 15:43 PM IST

Washington:  A new study has found why so many more women than men get multiple sclerosis (MS).

According to the study by researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, females susceptible to MS produce higher levels of a blood vessel receptor protein, S1PR2, than males and that the protein is present at even higher levels in the brain areas that MS typically damages.

The researchers said that when they looked at the protein's function in mice, they found that it can determine whether immune cells cross blood vessels into the brain, which cause the inflammation that leads to MS .

The study also identified 20 genes that were active at different levels in vulnerable female brain regions, but the researchers don't know what 16 of these genes do.

The study was published in the Journal of Clinical Investigation.