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06.12.19

MS Society announces 13 new tech projects worth £1.3m

Multiple Sclerosis Society (MS Society) announced this week (Dec 3) that they are committed to raising £1.3m to fund 13 new research projects with ‘technology at the forefront’.

Included in the projects is research into MS progression and a focus on how new technologies can be used to manage the symptoms of MS.

One project will look at using wearable robots to improve the fitness of people with MS. Research recommends 30 minutes of moderate exercise, three times a day, something that people with advanced MS often struggle to do.

Dr Siva Nair from Royal Hallamshire Hospital is developing the use of ‘powered exoskeletons’, a wearable robot designed to help support movement for individuals with weakness in their legs.

The aim is to understand how well the exoskeletons work and combat conditions like heart disease, strokes, diabetes, obesity and depression through making exercise easier for people with MS, to sufficiently raise their heart rate.

Professor Lorna Paul at Glasgow Caledonian University is also working on investigating virtual reality to help people with problems in their arms and hands to engage with a rehabilitation programme.

The virtual reality games could provide exercises and actions to mimic, that people with MS might struggle with, such as turning a key in a lock.

Director of research, Dr Susan Kohlhaas, said:

“More than 100,000 people live with MS in the UK and, for many people living with progressive forms of the condition, there are no treatments available. We believe we can stop MS, and until then we urgently need to find new and innovative ways to help everyone with the condition.

"We’re investing in these projects because they have the potential to significantly improve quality of life for everyone living with MS, and ultimately help us stop MS faster.”

Other research projects will focus on slowing or stopping MS progression through multiple cell research and cognitive studies.

 

Photo: MS Society website 

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