A.J.S. Rayl's article on the possibility of an oral treatment for multiple sclerosis1 (MS) once again points out the need for new thinking about the causes and treatments for MS. For over 50 years, the public has been inundated with incomplete and misleading information about the nature of MS, its origins, and potential treatments. The "MS industry" has been touting either the infectious (bacterial or viral) or immunological etiology of the disease along with the experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE) as the paradigm of the animal model.2,3

The much-touted EAE model is nothing more than a model for inducing immunological reactions, not for mimicking MS. One specific example should suffice to substantiate this claim: In MS, perivascular infiltration and cellular inflammatory response follow myelin destruction, whereas in EAE infiltration and inflammation precede the breakdown of myelin, as one would expect in any experimentally induced immunological reaction against myelin or...

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