In July 2015, MStranslate had the privilege of collaborating with the Kriesel Lab, a multiple sclerosis research group based at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City, USA. Across a one week period, researchers from the team introduced, discussed and explained aspects of the work they’re currently undertaking. These features can be revisited below. HUMAN ENDOGENOUS RETROVIRUSES & MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS To begin the week, Dr John Kriesel, head of the Kriesel Lab, provided an overall introduction to his team. In particular, he discussed their investigations into the link between human endogenous retroviruses (HERVs) and multiple sclerosis (MS). DEEP SEQUENCING OF MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS BRAIN TISSUE In our second feature we met Kael Fischer, Ph.D., who introduced and discussed the technique of deep sequencing, and how it is being used to analyse viral and bacterial signatures of brain tissue from people with multiple sclerosis. DEEP SEQUENCING FOR THE DETECTION OF VIRUS-LIKE SEQUENCES IN THE BRAINS OF PATIENTS WITH MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS To follow on from the above video, our next feature was a 2012 finding, published by the group in the journal PLoS One, where they sequenced the hepatitis G virus from the brain of a person with multiple sclerosis (MS). This was the first time that this virus had ever been discovered in the human brain. This finding showed the power of this technique, which they are continuing to use to determine whether there is a common viral component to MS. The full article can be freely accessed and read here. STUDY RECRUITMENT – VIRAL EXPRESSION IN MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS BRAIN TISSUE In our second last feature, Dr Bryce Moulton explained how people living with multiple sclerosis can participate in research being undertaken by the Kriesel Lab. The study seeks participants that have previously had a brain biopsy to help with the diagnosis of their multiple sclerosis. As Dr Moulton explains, there is NO requirement to travel to Utah to take part, meaning the study is open to people all around the world. Using the details contained in the video, simply contact the team to confirm your eligibility and they’ll guide you through the process from there. LIVE ONLINE Q&A VIA GOOGLE HANGOUT Our week-long event culminated with a live online Q&A, where both Dr John Kriesel and Kael Fisher, Ph.D., joined Brett and two members of our MStranslate community to discuss their research in a Google Hangout. A full recording of that discussion can be viewed on our Google Hangouts page, which can be accessed here. Overall, this collaboration was extremely well received by our community. We thank all members of the Kriesel Lab for their time, enthusiasm and support of the event, and we look forward to providing further updates on their work in the future.