A revolutionary treatment provides millions of people suffering from osteoarthritis with hope that their agonizing pain will be stopped for good.
Scientists have discovered a vaccine that blocks the nerve growth factor which causes pain with one simple injection. Currently, osteoarthritis sufferers commonly rely on painkillers with unwanted side effects to counter the excruciating pain that strikes on a daily basis.
As Oxford University researchers found, however, there is hope to combat the disease by injecting a vaccine that encourages the immune system to block the naturally-occurring NGF.
While the tests were run on animal subjects, the scientists believe that the results are convincing enough to suggest that the treatment could potentially be implemented to treat the pain of millions of suffers around the world.
According to the figures, it is estimated that as many as 30 million people suffer from osteoarthritis in the US alone.
“This is the first successful vaccination to target pain in osteoarthritis, one of the biggest healthcare challenges of our generation,” Professor Tonia Vincent, the co-author of the groundbreaking study, claimed.
The vaccine, also known as CuMVttNGF, which clearly indicated the ability to reverse pain in mice, was described as “very promising” by the charity that funded the research.
Allegedly, the mice that were unable to stand or walk straight due to arthritic pain showed great improvements after having the vaccine injected.
As the scientists claim, the vaccination also resulted in higher levels of antibodies that have been “associated with an analgesic response.”
“Whilst there are still safety issues that need to be considered before these types of approaches can be used in patients, we are reassured that this vaccine design allows us to control antibody levels and thus tailor treatment to individual cases according to need,” Professor Vincent added.
Speaking of the revolutionary treatment, Dr. Stephen Simpson of charity Versus Arthritis said:
“Too many people living with pain do not get effective relief from the treatments that are currently available.
“And that is why the development of more effective pain killers, with fewer side-effects, is vital for people living with arthritis.
“Although at an early stage, this is highly innovative research and these results are very promising. We are proud to support research such as this, which aims to tackle this urgent problem and discover new ways to help people overcome pain.”
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