Researchers have found the evidence for the causes of AFM, Acute Flaccid Myelitis which is an illness that is rare and is similar to that of polio. The disease affects children. As per a study which had been published on Monday, it has been said that the culprit is actually a virus.
Ever since the early cases which had been documented in the year 2012, it has been debated by scientists how the children who have AFM which can cause paralysis and weakness. Some have thought that the cause had been an autoimmune disorder while the others had suspected a virus.
Till recently though the evidences of a virus had only been circumstantial and had not been found in 98% of the patients of AFM who had tested their spinal fluids as per the study.
By using a tool namely VirScan which hunts virus, the scientists had been able to examine the patient’s spinal fluid for an immune response to the enterovirus and to many other viruses at the same time.
By using the method, the team had confirmed that the presence of the antibodies for these enterovirus strains A71 & D68 in close to 70% of the AFM patients on whom they were tested. No antibodies had been found against any of the other viruses.
An author of the study is saying that when an infection is there in the spinal cord, the antibody-making immune cells are travelling there and making more antibodies.
They think that finding the antibodies against the enterovirus in the AFM patients has meant that the virus goes directly to the spinal cord which is why they are blaming it on the virus.
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