We have been working with one of the senior members of our research consortium to initiate the treatment of a few individuals impacted by RE with Tysabri. Tysabri is a prescription medicine used to treat multiple sclerosis, but there is a consensus among our researchers that this drug may be successful in treating RE. It is not uncommon for a drug to be used to treat several diseases. Like all drugs there are side effects and issues to be addressed, but our experts feel the risks can be minimized. If you are interested in participating in the treatment please contact me. The individual must be pre-hemispherectomy. There will not be a charge to the individual to participate in the program.
Dr. Chui is a leader in the development of the latest diagnostic tool to identify the culprits that cause disease. “The researchers’ latest method is called unbiased next-generation sequencing. To identify a pathogen, the researchers extract every scrap of DNA in a sample from a patient, which might be blood, cerebrospinal fluid or stool. Then they sift the genetic fragments for those belonging to pathogens.
The technique already has proved valuable for investigating mysterious disease outbreaks, and a number of scientists have begun to hope it can be adapted to the diagnosis of individual patients’ infections. Rather than test for a suspected pathogen, a doctor could simply run a DNA test that could identify the culprit no matter what it is — virus, bacterium, fungus or parasite.”
The article mentions that Dr. Chui is working to identify the causes of encephalitis. For the past two years we have been working with Dr. Chui to determine if there is a viral cause of RE. With the success of our tissue collection program over the last year we have been able to provide DNA to Dr. Chui’s lab to sequence with his microarray technology. The initial results of his work are in the scientific notes of our February research symposium which was held at UCLA. The bottom line is that, to date, we have not been able to identify a viral cause of RE. That, however, is not the end of the story, and it is too early too definitively say that RE is not caused by a virus. There are stories of individuals taking herbal-based remedies in China and Latin America that treat rare epilepsies as if they were caused by viruses. We are in the process of more thoroughly vetting these stories and will keep you posted. In the interim, click on the notes and read the summary of Dr. Chui’s presentation.
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