Funding for study on multiple sclerosis and diet

Funding for study on multiple sclerosis and diet

MS Research Australia grant recipient Dr Yasmine Probst to investigate effect of diet on MS

University of Wollongong dietitian Dr Yasmine Probst has been awarded an Incubator Grant from MS Research Australia to further her research into whether diet can reduce the symptoms of multiple sclerosis (MS).

Dr Probst is a Senior Lecturer in nutrition and dietetics in UOW’s School of Medicine and a Research Fellow with the Illawarra Health and Medical Research Institute.

She is researching whether a balanced diet can reduce the symptoms of MS, and whether an increased intake of antioxidant-rich fruit and vegetable offers any benefits to people living with MS. Her aim ultimately is to develop dietary guidance for people living with MS.

Dr Probst, who was herself diagnosed with MS in 2004, will use the one-year, $24,969 grant to develop a methodological translation framework for assessing dietary intakes in clinical studies of persons with multiple sclerosis.

“My research to improve outcomes for people living with MS involves a methodological process for updating the dietary approaches in cohort studies, as many weren’t designed with diet in mind,” Dr Probst said.

Dr Probst’s funding was announced on Wednesday, 23 January, as part of MS Research Australia’s 2018/19 grant round, under which $1.75 million has been committed to MS researchers across Australia. MS Research Australia is the largest national non-for-profit funder of multiple sclerosis research in Australia.

MS Research Australia CEO Dr Matthew Miles congratulated Dr Probst on her Incubator Grant.

“We are very pleased to be supporting this important research. Dr Yasmine Probst aims to improve our understanding of the impact of dietary factors on MS, which will hopefully help in the development of measureable dietary guidance to support the management of MS,” Dr Miles said.


MS is a condition of the central nervous system, interfering with nerve impulses within the brain, spinal cord and optic nerves. It affects more than 25,600 Australians and more than two million people worldwide.

Most people are diagnosed between the ages of 20-40, but it can affect younger and older people too. Roughly three times as many women have MS as men.

Many genetic and environmental factors have been shown to contribute to the development of MS, however there is no know single cause of it and, as yet, no cure.