Researchers, Biotech Companies Present Key MS Discoveries & Therapy Updates at Recent Conference

Patricia Silva, PhD avatar

by Patricia Silva, PhD |

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The 67th American Academy of Neurology Annual Meeting took place last week in Washington, DC and included eight investigators from the Tisch MS Research Center of New York, whose research efforts focus on finding a cure for multiple sclerosis (MS). The researchers attended the meeting to share data and insights on their latest discoveries.

Tisch MS researchers Marwan Alahiri, Ying Liu, Bianca Ulloa, and Saud Sadiq presented a poster entitled “The Protection of A2aR on BBB Permeability from Th1 Cytokines in MS” on Tuesday, April 21, during Poster Session II, MS and CNS Inflammatory Diseases: In Vitro Studies, Experimental, and Animal Models.

On Wednesday, Tisch MS  investigators presented six other key posters. Pak Ho Au, Christopher Sears, Jerry Lin and Saud Sadiq presented the abstract “Myelin Oligodendrocyte Glycoprotein is the Primary Myelin Protein Target of CSF B-cell Antibodies in MS,” while the abstract “Metabolite Profiling of Cerebrospinal Fluid Derived from MS Patients,” was authored by Danielle Blemur, Fozia Mir and Saud Sadiq.

In addition, “Transglutaminase 6 is a potential biomarker of disease activity and astrocytic proliferation in MS,” was presented by Daniel Gratch, Benjamin Pagano, Kelsey McDermott, Massimiliano Cristofanilli and Saud Sadiq, while “Cerebrospinal Fluid Haptoglobin (Hp) Levels are elevated in MS patients with progressive disease” was presented by Bianca Ulloa, Marwan Alahiri, Ying Liu and Saud Sadiq.

Finally, the study “Fetuin-A Correlates with Cortical Demyelination and is a CSF Biomarker of Disease Activity in Progressive MS,” was presented by Mark Landy, Violaine Harris, Ying Liu, Saud Sadiq, and “Fetuin-A, a CSF Biomarker of MS Disease Activity, is Upregulated at the Blood Brain Barrier,” was given by Ruth-Anne Langan, Violaine Harris, Mark Landy, Saud Sadiq.

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Sadiq was also responsible for presenting the preliminary outcomes from a Phase 1 clinical trial to evaluate to evaluate stem cell treatments in patients with MS. The results were made public during the session entitled “Multiple Sclerosis Highlights in the Field,” which also took place Wednesday, April 22.

French biotechnology company MedDay had already announced they would present data on its highly-concentrated biotin experimental treatment for progressive MS, MD1003 at the meeting, which was demonstrated to be effective in a recent phase III trial. MD1003 may be able to both increase myelin, the fatty nerve-insulating substance that is destroyed in MS, and energy to nerve cells so that they can communicate more effectively.

Similarly, MediciNova, Inc., had announced the acceptance of an abstract describing their ongoing Phase 2b clinical trial of MN-166 (ibudilast) in progressive MS. The poster was presented at the meeting and entitled “NN 102/SPRINT-MS Phase II Trial of Ibudilast in Progressive MS: Baseline Characteristics.”