The results of a new pilot study showed the efficacy of lipoic acid in the reduction of whole brain atrophy among patients with secondary progressive multiple sclerosis (SPMS) compared with recently approved FDA drug ocrelizumab (brand name Ocrevus). In a randomized, double-blind study, researchers found that a daily dose of 1,200 mg of lipoic acid taken for two years reduced symptoms associated with SPMS, a more severe form of multiple sclerosis. These findings could offer hope for patients with MS, a condition with no recognized cure.
Lipoic acid is a naturally-occurring antioxidant produced by the body. In Europe, it is regulated as drug as a treatment for diabetes-related complications as well as conditions associated with alcoholism. Here, it is marketed as an alternative supplement, aimed at reducing the effects of oxidative stress. While there have been several attempts to link the antioxidant with the prevention or treatment of various diseases, this is the first conclusive study which suggests the potency of lipoic acid with regards to neurological conditions.
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