Genetic factors partially explain the susceptibility of multiple sclerosis (MS) and might even relate to the clinical course. Still, many epidemiological studies point at an important role for environmental factors in MS. Smoking is one of the major candidates. In this review we provide an overview of the epidemiological studies on cigarette smoking and the association on MS risk and MS clinical course. In addition, we discuss the possible biological pathways that may influence neurological damage in MS. Moreover, the relation of smoking with other environmental MS risk factors will be addressed.

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Journal of the Neurological Sciences
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam

Jafari, N., & Hintzen, R. (2011). The association between cigarette smoking and multiple sclerosis. Journal of the Neurological Sciences (Vol. 311, pp. 78–85). doi:10.1016/j.jns.2011.09.008