The Etiology of Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is unknown. Existing Epidemiologic data suggests that MS can be an infectious disease. MS used to be classified as one of the 'slow infections' - many of these are caused by Prions.
Prions are small, proteinaceous, infectious particles - distinguished from Viruses by the absence of intrinsic Nucleic Acids.
In a contrast to the 'classic' Prional Diseases (Kuru, Scrapie or Creutzfeldt-Jacob Disease) that in CNS affect primarily Neurons, the 'target' cell in MS is an Oligodendrocyte.
This may explain differences in disease presentation. This paper presents a pathophysiological model of MS based on the assumption that MS is a Prional Disease.
Processes leading to DeMyelination in Multiple Sclerosis seem also to involve Lymphocytes, Astrocytes and Macrophages as well as the Interferon System.