Professor Robin Franklin has won the 2017 Barancik Prize for Innovation for his research into multiple sclerosis, which could offer a means of halting the progression of the disease.
Franklin, a Professor of Stem Cell Medicine at the Wellcome Trust-MRC Cambridge Stem Cell Institute, was recognised for his research into how the coating of nerve fibres, called the myelin sheath, regenerates. It is hoped that his research could lead to the development of techniques to protect and even repair the nervous system of people suffering nerve damage as a result of multiple sclerosis, halting the progression of the disease.
Multiple sclerosis is a potentially disabling disease of the central nervous system, which disrupts the flow of information within the brain, and between the brain and body. Eventually, the disease can cause the nerves themselves to deteriorate or become permanently damaged. Symptoms can range from numbness or weakness in one or more limbs to fatigue, dizziness and partial or complete loss of vision. The severity of symptoms depends on the extent of the nerve damage.
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