GEMS - Genes and Environment in Multiple Sclerosis

Denna sida på svenska

The aim of the GEMS-study is to investigate how genes and environmental factors are interacting in the development of Multiple Sclerosis (MS).

MS is a disabling disease with serious human, social and medical consequences. The prevalence of MS i n Sweden are from the latest research 189/100 000 inhabitants and there are around 17 000 persons in total with the disease. Each year there are around 5-8 new cases per 100 000 inhabitants. Women are affected 2-3 times as often as men. The etiology is unknown but several risk-genes and some environmental risk factors have lately been identified.



The study is a case-control study. Prevalent cases are identified from the National Swedish MS registry (SMSreg). To each case one control is randomly selected matched for sex, age and residential area.

A 24-page questionnaire on environmental factors together with blood sampling-kits is sent out by mail and then collected and analyzed.

In total 16000 study subject are included in the study.



The study is collaboration between the department of Clinical Neuroscience and the Institute of Environmental medicine at Karolinska Institutet.

The study is carried out using the Swedish Multiple Sclerosis Registry, SMSreg



  • Bibbi och Nils Jensens Stiftelse


Project group

Professor Jan Hillert, Principal Investigator

Department of Clinical Neuroscience


Professor Lars Alfredsson, Co-Investigator

Institute of Environmental Medicine


Professor Tomas Olsson, Co-investigator

Department of Clinical Neuroscience


Karin Lycke, Research Nurse

Department of Clinical Neuroscience