– Contributed by – David Platrow, author of “Vitiligo Miracle”. David is also a speaker, researcher, nutritionist and health consultant.
If you suffer from Vitiligo, a condition that strips your skin of its natural pigment or coloring, the odds are good that you are also battling some sort of autoimmune disorder. It took years for doctors to connect the two disorders, but recent research shows that at least 20 percent of Vitiligo suffers also get autoimmune thyroid disease, and that’s juts the beginning.
Many more suffer a multitude of other disorders.
Until recently, the link between the Vitiligo and autoimmune problems were not clear. Doctors seemed to see a link, but nothing substantial could be proven. Until now. In march 2013, The National Institute’s of Health’s National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS) announced an amazing discovery.
A connection between a specific gene named NALP1, Vitiligo and a host of autoimmune diseases including thyroid disease, pernicious anemia, rheumatoid arthritis, lupus and Addison’s Disease.
According to lead researcher, Richard Spritz M.D, the discovery of this gene may make newer, more effective Vitiligo treatments possible within the next few years. But that’s not all. It will also be able to help treat certain auto immune disorders. By finding ways to block the inflammatory response of the NALP1 gene, doctors may some day be able to cure certain autoimmune disorders.
Affecting nearly 25 million Americans, autoimmune diseases can be life threatening, says NIAMS Director Stephen I. Kratz, M.D., PhD.
“The more we can understand these diseases, including the genes that predispose us to them, the closer we come to better treatments and preventative measures.”
The same is true for Vitiligo. Maybe not life threatening, the skin disorder does play havoc with its victim’s quality of life. As more and more Melanocytes are destroyed within the skin, the epidermis is stripped of its coloring, leaving unsightly markings on the skin.
Finding a more effective treatment plan may be possible now that researchers understand the link between the gene that causes the disorder and autoimmune diseases associated with it.
By learning how to block inflammatory pathways and keeping the immune system from turning itself on, doctors hope to stop the spread of Vitiligo before it becomes noticeable, and keep other over-reactive immune responses at bay.
Although still in its early stages of research, the fact that a single gene link has been found shows promise, claim both doctors Katz and Spritz. In time this important discovery of the NALP1 gene may hold the key to a cure for both medical maladies.
A long-term solution for vitiligo should address the internal causes of vitiligo by tackling all its contributing factors. Only by controlling the nutritional, hormonal, psychological and environmental triggers of vitiligo, using a multidimensional and holistic approach to healing you can reverse the “internal vitiligo environment”, the only, safe, natural and effective way you could ever achieve lasting vitiligo freedom.