#ECTRIMS2016 – Here’s my Pick of Friday’s Best at the Congress

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Friday carries on the ECTRIMS congress’s style of so much going on that it must be difficult for delegates to decide which sessions to attend and which ones they can afford to miss. Of course, not everyone can make the same choice but, having delved into the agenda, here is my pick of the best of today’s highlights.

Today, two satellite symposia, an interesting congress session, and three “hot topics” stand out.

The first satellite symposium is “The evolving management of relapsing MS.” This includes: “Current treatment targets,” by G. Comi, of Milan, Italy; “Unmet patient needs,” by E. Havrdová, of Prague, Czech Republic; and “Future therapeutic options,” by J.A. Cohen, of Cleveland, Ohio, U.S.  The symposium is supported by Celgene.

ECTRIMSThe second seems even more interesting. It is “Brain volume loss and disability in MS: What are the clinical implications?” H. Wiendl, of Münster, Germany, is presenting “Understanding mechanism of action in the context of patient outcomes,” then B. Singer, of St. Louis, Miss., U.S., is addressing “Preserving brain and function: What it means to patients.” The symposium is supported by Sanofi Genzyme.

Another subject worthy of attention is “New directions in progressive MS research.” This includes six amazing presentations: “The evolving understanding of pathogenic mechanisms of progressive MS,” by C. Stadelmann, of Göttingen, Germany; “Unblocking the bottleneck – better trial design in progressive multiple sclerosis,” by J. Chataway, of London, U.K.; “Molecular-based diagnosis of multiple sclerosis and its progressive stage,” by P. Kosa, of Bethesda, Md, U.S.; “A new rodent model of progressive demyelination and neurodegeneration mimicking progressive MS,” by S. Nessler, of Göttingen, Germany; “Synaptic loss in the MS spinal cord: a key driver of disease progression?” by N. Petrova, of London, U.K.; and “Lipoic acid for neuroprotection in secondary progressive multiple sclerosis: results of a randomized placebo-controlled pilot trial,” by R.I. Spain, of Portland, Ore., U.S.

Pick of the Best Hot Topics

The three hop topics I would pick start with “B-cell depletion therapy: a panacea for MS?” In this, “B-cell mediated pathogenic mechanisms in MS” is presented by A. Bar-Or, of Montreal, Canada; “Clinical trials and role of B-cell depletion therapy in relapsing-remitting MS,” by S. Hauser, of San Francisco, Calif., U.S.; and “Clinical trials and role of B-cell depletion therapy in progressive MS,” by B. Hemmer, of Munich, Germany.

My second hot topic is “Recent advances in imaging MS”. This covers: “Network analysis in MS through in vivo imaging,” by P. Tewarie, of Amsterdam, Netherlands; “PET imaging of cellular and molecular abnormalities in MS,” by B. Stankoff, of Paris, France; and “Distinguishing the brain MRI features of MS, AQP4- and MOG-antibody disease,” by M. Jurynczyk, of Oxford, U.K.

Finally, I would pick the hot topic “CSF biomarkers can predict the course of MS and response to treatment.” G. Giovannoni, of London, U.K. is speaking in favor, while A.E. Miller, of New York, U.S. is against. The topic is rounded off by a paper titled “High cerebrospinal fluid chitinase-3 like protein 1 levels increase the risk of conversion from radiologically isolated syndrome to clinically definite multiple sclerosis,” by E. Thouvenot, of Nîmes, France.

Note: Multiple Sclerosis News Today is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The opinions expressed in this column are not those of Multiple Sclerosis News Today, or its parent company, BioNews Services, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to multiple sclerosis.

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Ian Franks is Managing Editor of the Columns division of BioNews Services. He has enjoyed a successful career as a journalist, from reporter to editor, in the print media; during which he gained a Journalist of the Year award in his native UK. He was diagnosed with MS in 2002 but continued working until mobility problems forced him to retire early in late 2006. He now lives in the south of Spain and uses his skills to write his own flourishing specialist MS, Health & Disability blog at www.50shadesofsun.com. Besides MS, Ian is also able to write about both epilepsy and cardiovascular matters from a patient’s perspective and is a keen advocate on mobility and accessibility issues.
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