Research that points to a potential blood biomarker of multiple sclerosis (MS) severity, relates cognitive difficulties to patients’ employment and other measures of socioeconomic status, and one-year results of an ongoing clinical trial are among data presentations planned by Biogen for the annual meeting of the American Academy of Neurology (AAN).
This year’s AAN meeting, the group’s 70th, opens in Los Angeles on April 21 and runs through April 27.
Neurofilament light (NfL), part of the neuronal cytoskeleton or “cell skeleton,” has key roles in neuron development. Previous studies show that damage to nerve cells triggers a rise in NfL levels in the cerebral spinal fluid and blood of patients with neurodegenerative diseases like MS, supporting its potential as a disease biomarker.
At the meeting, researchers will present data supporting NfL blood levels as a promising biomarker to monitor treatment response and help stratify MS patients according to disease severity. Using NfL levels as a biomarker could help to tailor treatments and so improve patients’ long-term outcomes.
The oral presentation, “Serum Neurofilament Light (NfL): Towards a Blood Test for Prognosis and Disease/Treatment Monitoring in Multiple Sclerosis Patients,” is scheduled for April 24.
That same day, other researchers will disclose one-year interim results of the Phase 3 EVOLVE-MS-1 study (NCT02634307) evaluating an investigational treatment in patients with relapsing-remitting MS (RRMS).
The two-year, open-label clinical trial aims to assess the long-term safety and tolerability of ALKS 8700 (now known as BIIB098) in 935 RRMS patients at sites across the U.S. and Europe.
BIIB098, licensed in 2017 by Biogen from Alkermes is an oral compound that, once ingested, is rapidly transformed into monomethyl fumarate (MMF), a compound similar to Biogen’s approved Tecfidera (dimethyl fumarate).
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