An autoimmune disease of the central nervous system (CNS)

In NMOSD, there is inflammation or damage to the optic nerves, spinal cord, and/or brain. The majority of people with NMOSD produce antibodies to a protein called aquaporin-4 (AQP4).

Inflammation is the body's natural response to foreign organisms and is normally a way to fight infection and promote healing. But in NMOSD, the body’s immune system mistakes normal tissue in the CNS as something harmful and begins to attack the optic nerves and spinal cord, causing symptoms and injury.

Repeated inflammation within the CNS can result in relapses that may be severe and unpredictable. During a relapse, new damage to the optic nerves and/or spinal cord can occur.

NMOSD causes inflammation in the CNS that can damage the optic nerves and spinal cord.

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