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ACTRIMS 2021 | Exploring the protective nature of pregnancy in MS

It has long been recognized that reproductive factors, including sex steroid hormone production and pregnancy, have influence over disease course in multiple sclerosis (MS). Data consistently shows that pregnancy can be protective against relapses in MS. Jennifer Graves, MD, PhD, MAS, University of California San Diego School of Medicine, San Diego, CA, discusses the findings of her editorial, recently published in JAMA Neurology, focused on pregnancy’s influence over initial MS onset. The article concluded that pregnancy might forestall the development of the first MS attack. Combined with the evidence of pregnancy’s protective nature against relapses, this suggests that many aspects of pregnancy may be relevant to controlling MS disease activity, including both hormonal and gene expression changes. This interview took place during the ACTRIMS Forum 2021.