• Question: Is their a link with the incidence of MS in a family and genetics ?Or is it an auto immune condition depending on where in the world you live?

    Asked by 825genp37 to Remsha, Oliver, Lisa, Kieran, Fiana on 14 Nov 2018.
    • Photo: Fiana

      Fiana answered on 14 Nov 2018:

      Great question! The cause of MS is not known. MS is not an inherited disease so it does not get passed down through generations, because of this there is usually no link with the incidence of MS in a family and genetics. However what can be inherited is a risk for MS. There are about 200 genes that may give some risk to developing MS later in life and research is ongoing to find out how these genes could be playing a role 🙂

    • Photo: Remsha Afzal

      Remsha Afzal answered on 14 Nov 2018: last edited 14 Nov 2018 3:12 pm

      YES! An MS question finally 😀 MS is definitely an autoimmune condition because your immune cells are attacking the fatty layer surrounding your nerves that protect them. We don’t know the actual cause of this happening, but like Fiana said there is no gene that “causes” MS, rather there are genes that can increase your CHANCES of developing MS. This is why MS is called a ‘complex’ disease. This means any disease where a mixture of genes and environment can trigger it. There is definitely an increase of MS in northern areas of the world like Canada and Ireland, suggesting your environment plays a role there too. Then, certain viruses can trigger it too, like there have been studies showing people who get the Eppstein Barr Virus, have a higher chance of getting MS!