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Polman C.H.,University of Amsterdam | Bertolotto A.,Multiple Sclerosis Regional Referral Center | Deisenhammer F.,Innsbruck Medical University | Giovannoni G.,Neuroimmunology Unit | And 11 more authors.
The Lancet Neurology | Year: 2010

The identification of factors that can affect the efficacy of immunomodulatory drugs in relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis (MS) is important. For the available interferon-beta products, neutralising antibodies (NAb) have been shown to affect treatment efficacy. In June, 2009, a panel of experts in MS and NAbs to interferon-beta therapy convened in Amsterdam, Netherlands, under the auspices of the Neutralizing Antibodies on Interferon beta in Multiple Sclerosis consortium, a European-based project of the 6th Framework Programme of the European Commission, to review and discuss data on NAbs and their practical consequences for the treatment of patients with MS on interferon beta. The panel believed that information about NAbs and other markers of biological activity of interferons (ie, myxovirus resistance protein A [MxA]) can be integrated with clinical and imaging indicators to guide individual treatment decisions. In cases of sustained high-titre NAb positivity and/or lack of MxA bioactivity, a switch to a non-interferon-beta therapy should be considered. In patients who are doing poorly clinically, therapy should be switched irrespective of NAb or MxA bioactivity. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Hartung H.-P.,Heinrich Heine University Dusseldorf | Montalban X.,Hospital Universitari Vall dHebron | Sorensen P.S.,Copenhagen University | Vermersch P.,University of Lille Nord de France | Olsson T.,Neuroimmunology Unit
Expert Review of Neurotherapeutics | Year: 2011

We are entering a new era in the management of patients with multiple sclerosis (MS). The first oral treatment (fingolimod) has now gained US FDA approval, addressing an unmet need for patients with MS who wish to avoid parenteral administration. A second agent (cladribine) is currently being considered for approval. With the arrival of these oral agents, a key question is where they may fit into the existing MS treatment algorithm. This article aims to help answer this question by analyzing the trial data for the new oral therapies, as well as for existing MS treatments, by applying practical clinical experience, and through consideration of our increased understanding of how to define treatment success in MS. This article also provides a speculative look at what the treatment algorithm may look like in 5 years, with the availability of new data, greater experience and, potentially, other novel agents. © 2011 Expert Reviews Ltd.

Ben-Ami E.,Technion - Israel Institute of Technology | Berrih-Aknin S.,Institute of Myology | Miller A.,Technion - Israel Institute of Technology | Miller A.,Neuroimmunology Unit
Autoimmunity Reviews | Year: 2011

Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) are non-hematopoietic, multipotent progenitor cells which can be isolated from various human adult tissues. In recent years, MSCs have been shown to possess broad immunoregulatory capabilities, modulating both adaptive and innate immunity. This review discusses the documented immunomodulatory capabilities of the MSCs, the possible mechanisms underlying these functions and presents the potential of using this stem cell-based approach as an immunomodulatory tool for the treatment of autoimmune diseases. © 2011 Elsevier B.V.

Kauffman M.A.,University of Buenos Aires | Kauffman M.A.,Neurogenetics Laboratory | Gonzalez-Moron D.,University of Buenos Aires | Garcea O.,Neuroimmunology Unit | Villa A.M.,Neuroimmunology Unit
Molecular Biology Reports | Year: 2012

Systemic autoinflammatory diseases are genetic disorders characterized by seemingly unprovoked inflammation, without major involvement of the adaptive immune system. Among them it is recognized the TNF receptor associated periodic syndrome (TRAPS) caused by mutations in the TNFRSF1A gene and characterized by symptoms such as recurrent high fevers, rash, abdominal pain, arthralgia and myalgia. Recent studies have recognized the potential role of TNFRSF1A mutations in Multiple Sclerosis (MS). Our aim was to investigate the role of TNFRSF1A R92Q gene mutation in a cohort of 90 Argentinean MS patients, where we determined the frequency of the TNFRSF1A R92Q mutation. We also compared autoinflammatory symptoms, MS clinical characteristics and treatment response and tolerability in R92Q carriers and non-carriers. Also, we used a case-control study design to obtain the genotypes of 78 healthy controls and assess the role of this mutation as a risk factor for MS. We found that five patients (5.5%) carried the R92Q mutation, four reported autoinflammatory symptoms previous to MS onset. We found no differences in MS clinical features, treatment response and tolerability between carriers and non-carriers. R92Q mutation was more frequent in MS patients as compared to controls. This increases the risk to develop MS in about 4.5 times. The TNFRSF1A R92Q mutation is a common finding in Argentinean MS patients. This genetic variant might be a risk factor for MS. © 2011 Springer Science+Business Media B.V.

Cohen J.A.,Cleveland Clinic | Barkhof F.,VU University Amsterdam | Comi G.,Vita-Salute San Raffaele University | Hartung H.-P.,Heinrich Heine University Dusseldorf | And 13 more authors.
New England Journal of Medicine | Year: 2010

Background: Fingolimod (FTY720), a sphingosine-1-phosphate-receptor modulator that prevents lymphocyte egress from lymph nodes, showed clinical efficacy and improvement on imaging in a phase 2 study involving patients with multiple sclerosis. Methods: In this 12-month, double-blind, double-dummy study, we randomly assigned 1292 patients with relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis who had a recent history of at least one relapse to receive either oral fingolimod at a daily dose of either 1.25 or 0.5 mg or intramuscular interferon beta-1a (an established therapy for multiple sclerosis) at a weekly dose of 30 μg. The primary end point was the annualized relapse rate. Key secondary end points were the number of new or enlarged lesions on T2-weighted magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans at 12 months and progression of disability that was sustained for at least 3 months. Results: A total of 1153 patients (89%) completed the study. The annualized relapse rate was significantly lower in both groups receiving fingolimod - 0.20 (95% confidence interval [CI], 0.16 to 0.26) in the 1.25-mg group and 0.16 (95% CI, 0.12 to 0.21) in the 0.5-mg group - than in the interferon group (0.33; 95% CI, 0.26 to 0.42; P<0.001 for both comparisons). MRI findings supported the primary results. No significant differences were seen among the study groups with respect to progression of disability. Two fatal infections occurred in the group that received the 1.25-mg dose of fingolimod: disseminated primary varicella zoster and herpes simplex encephalitis. Other adverse events among patients receiving fingolimod were nonfatal herpesvirus infections, bradycardia and atrioventricular block, hypertension, macular edema, skin cancer, and elevated liver-enzyme levels. Conclusions: This trial showed the superior efficacy of oral fingolimod with respect to relapse rates and MRI outcomes in patients with multiple sclerosis, as compared with intramuscular interferon beta-1a. Longer studies are needed to assess the safety and efficacy of treatment beyond 1 year. Copyright © 2010 Massachusetts Medical Society. All rights reserved.

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