What is this article about?
Multiple sclerosis (MS) (which means ‘many scars’) is an incurable neurological condition. It is characterised by an abnormal immune response that targets myelin, a fatty material responsible for insulating the nerve fibres in the central nervous system (CNS) (which comprises the brain, spinal cord and optic nerves). When the immune system mistakenly attacks the myelin, it is destroyed in a process known as demyelination. This leaves the underlying nerve exposed, leading to inflammation and scarring (lesion formation). This damage disrupts the nerve impulses, impairing their ability to transmit messages between the brain and the body. As a result, the individual will experience a variety of neurological and other symptoms.