A daily habit for many American adults, coffee drinking, may also decrease the risk of suffering from multiple sclerosis (MS), according to a recent study which will be presented during the upcoming 67th Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Neurology on April 18 – 25 in Washington, DC.
Ellen Mowry, MD, MCR, from the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore led the research that suggests consuming large amounts of coffee can decrease the risk of suffering MS symptoms. The research involved two studies, one conducted in Sweden and another in the United States, and can potentially validate additional coffee benefits, which are already demonstrated in other health conditions.
“Caffeine intake has been associated with a reduced risk of Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases, and our study shows that coffee intake may also protect against MS, supporting the idea that the drug may have protective effects for the brain,” said study author Dr. Mowry in a press release.
The Swedish study included 1,629 MS patients as well as 2,807 healthy participants, while the U.S. study included 1,159 MS patients and 1,172 healthy participants. In both studies, coffee consumption was reported both one and five years before the beginning of the disease symptoms, and in the Swedish study 10 years prior to that. The researchers then compared the habits of healthy participants during the same periods of time considering factors like age, sex, smoking, body mass index, and sun exposure habits.
The results showed that drinking at least six cups of coffee every day during the year before initiating MS symptoms decreased the risk of developing the disease when compared to non-coffee drinking. Also, drinking large quantities of coffee both 5 and 10 years prior to MS symptoms held the same benefits for MS prevention.
In addition, the U.S. study also demonstrated that people who did not drink coffee had an increased probability of developing MS when compared to participants who drank large amounts of coffee a year before developing the symptoms. “Caffeine should be studied for its impact on relapses and long-term disability in MS as well,” added Dr. Mowry.
In addition to this study, the company MediciNova, Inc. will also present an abstract describing their ongoing Phase 2b clinical trial of MN-166 (ibudilast) in progressive multiple sclerosis (MS) during the American Academy of Neurology’s 67th Annual Meeting. The presentation is entitled “NN 102/SPRINT-MS Phase II Trial of Ibudilast in Progressive MS: Baseline Characteristics” and is included in the event’s program, which will feature the latest developments in the field of multiple sclerosis.