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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. Jul 23, 1996; 93(15): 7861–7864.

1,25-Dihydroxyvitamin D3 reversibly blocks the progression of relapsing encephalomyelitis, a model of multiple sclerosis.


Experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE) is an autoimmune disease believed to be a model for the human disease multiple sclerosis (MS). Induced by immunizing B10.PL mice with myelin basic protein (MBP), EAE was completely prevented by the administration of 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D3 [1,25-(OH)2D3]. 1,25-(OH)2D3 could also prevent the progression of EAE when administered at the appearance of the first disability symptoms. Withdrawal of 1,25-(OH)2D3 resulted in a resumption of the progression of EAE. Thus, the block by 1,25-(OH)2D3 is reversible. A deficiency of vitamin D resulted in an increased susceptibility to EAE. Thus, 1,25-(OH)2D3 or its analogs are potentially important for treatment of MS.

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