They travel to the brain and mount an assault on a substance called myelin , which acts as a protective sheath around nerve fibers.
It turns out that the bacterium that causes leprosy directly damages a protective sheathing, made of the protein myelin , around many nerve cells.
The neurologic symptoms are a result of destruction of myelin , though axons may also be affected.
They then manipulated them in the laboratory to turn them into specialised cells that form myelin , the insulating layer than surrounds nerve fibres.
For example, multiple sclerosis involves the progressive destruction of the myelin that insulates neural axons.
It also preserved many of the myelinated nerve fibers in treated animals, compared to untreated rats and those that did not receive the triple combination, the researchers found.
Other innovations in this group of animals include an adaptive immune system similar to that of humans, a closed and pressurized circulatory system, and myelination of the nervous system.
The incompletely myelinated frontal lobes of children only gradually join the grid of electrical activity that operates the brain.
Numerous myelinated fibers traversing the globus pallidus make it much paler.
Some of these white myelinated fiber bundles can be followed downwards through the ventral part of the pons.