Alpha Lipoic Acid and multiple sclerosis

Alpha Lipoic Acid and multiple sclerosis

At my neurologist appointment she wanted me to start taking Alpha Lipoic acid 1200mg a day.  She explained that like the biotin study I talked about It was shown to help patients with secondary progressive multiple sclerosis. The vitamin is inexpensive. I got a bottle of 600mg on Amazon for $14.99. I take 2 a day. I just started yesterday. Like anything I will keep you updated to anything I’ve noticed both good and bad with my own MS symptoms. I found some information on the study from the National Multiple Sclerosis Society in the UK. It is a small study because of the cost ratio. Which I don’t particularly understand but that another topic.  This is what I found:

Lipoic acid is widely available as an over-the-counter supplement that is thought to act as an antioxidant. Studies in animal models of MS have shown that lipoic acid may alter the behaviour of certain immune cells, preventing them from entering the central nervous system. If correct, this could stop the immune cells from attacking and damaging myelin.

Research has also suggested that lipoic acid could also help to protect nerves from damage (neuroprotection).

Latest research

Phase 2/3 trial

A phase 2/3 clinical trial has been carried out in the USA (by the Department of Veterans Affairs) to test lipoic acid as a treatment for secondary progressive MS. The study, which began in 2010 and is due to be completed in 2016, involves 54 people who will take either 1,200mg of lipoic acid daily or a placebo (dummy) drug.

The trial will examine both the safety of lipoic acid and its potential to reduce brain injury and disability progression.

Top-line results announced at a conference in April 2016 show that treatment with lipoic acid led to a significant reduction in brain atrophy (shrinkage) compared to placebo. The treatment was reported to be safe and well tolerated overall. The common adverse events were reported to be injuries, infections and gastrointestinal disorders. Whilst these results still need to be published in a peer-reviewed scientific journal, they suggest that lipoic acic could play a neuroprotective role.

Phase 2 trial

A phase 2 trial (by Oregon Health and Science University) testing lipoic acid and omega-3 fatty acids as a treatment for MS (both relapsing remitting and secondary progressive) began in 2014. The trial aims to recruit 53 participants who will take a daily combination of 1,200mg lipoic acid and 3.3g of omega-3 fatty acids or a placebo for 12 weeks. The trial aims to determine whether lipoic acid and omega-3 fatty acids can improve cognitive function in people with MS.

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