EBV, discontinuation of DMT, 3 treatment reports

Welcome to the MS News Notes column, where I comment on multiple sclerosis (MS) news stories that came to my attention last week. This week, the reports cover research presented at a joint meeting of the European Committee for Treatment and Research in Multiple Sclerosis (ECTRIMS) and the American Committee for Treatment and Research in Multiple Sclerosis (ACTRIMS) in Milan earlier this month.

Another perspective on MS and EBV

Much has been written about the link between Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) and multiple sclerosis. Most people carry EBV, a member of the herpes virus family that causes mononucleosis. But only a small number of people develop multiple sclerosis.

Research reports that infection with EBV increases the risk of MS by 32 times. why is that?

It is reported Microsoft News Today The story “ECTRIMS 2023: New study may help explain link between EBV and MS” may be due to a combination of faulty immune regulation, genetics and specific EBV strains.

“In statistical models, the scientists calculated that patients who had genetic risk factors and were infected with an EBV strain that upregulated HLA-E, an immunomodulatory protein, were 260 times more likely to develop MS. People without these genetics were 260 times more likely to develop MS. factors for infection with other EBV strains,” the report said.

To me, this fact is all the more reason to move forward with EBV vaccine development at full speed. Do you agree?

Recommended reading

A person lies on a gurney, receiving intravenous fluids.

Discontinuation of treatment during study results in new disease activity

I often see questions on social media sites such as the MS News Today Facebook page from people wondering if they should stop taking disease-modifying therapies (DMTs). These people believe that if their disease is stable, there is no need to continue receiving DMT, which can be expensive, difficult to manage, and cause side effects.

“ECTRIMS 2023: More disease activity when treatment is stopped” The point of this story is that, no, patients should not stop treatment.

This study aimed to determine whether DMT can be discontinued in patients with stable disease. But the study ended prematurely because many participants who stopped treatment developed new disease activity that exceeded study guidelines.

On the other hand, the report stated, “None of the patients who continued to receive DMT experienced significant disease activity, recurrence, or significant MRI activity during the trial.”

After the usual two rounds of infusions, I stopped Lemtrada (alemtuzumab) treatment. But that was after taking three other DMT treatments, and I’m almost 70. That was about five years ago, and since I quit my job, I haven’t progressed as much as I thought it would. But everyone’s MS is different, and in general I think people should stick to DMT for as long as possible.

If you stopped treatment, why did you stop treatment and what were the consequences? Please share in the comments below.

Three positive treatment reports

Three additional studies published in ECTRIMS should be encouraging for people with multiple sclerosis.

Foralumab is an antibody-based nasal spray being tested in patients with multiple sclerosis. Notably, its testing involved patients with inactive secondary progressive MS, for which only one drug, mitoxantrone, has been approved in the U.S. to date.

“ECTRIMS 2023: Foralumab alleviates brain inflammation in SPMS” looks at a small study of 6 patients treated with foralumab. In this group, five out of six had reduced microglial activity. (Microglia in the brain may play a role in driving inflammation and nerve damage in multiple sclerosis.)

Fenebrutinib is an investigational oral drug designed to reduce MS inflammatory activity by reducing the activity of B cells and microglia immune cells. It does this by targeting Bruton’s tyrosine kinase (BTK), a protein required for this type of inflammation.

“ECTRIMS 2023: Fenbrutinib reduces new lesions in relapsing multiple sclerosis” reports details of a study that looked at 106 patients with relapsing multiple sclerosis who had symptoms as early as It started appearing 10 years ago. The study said that compared with placebo, taking fenbrutinib for 12 weeks reduced the number of new inflammatory lesions by 90%. Treated patients also had a 49% reduction in new or enlarged lesions after four weeks.

MS progression is a metric examined in a study discussed in “ECTRIMS 2023: Most people on Zeposia see slower progression of disability.” In a trial called RADIANCE and its extension study, more than three-quarters of patients with relapsing forms of multiple sclerosis who received Zeposia (ozanimod) showed no progression in disability after eight years of follow-up. More than 1,300 patients with relapsing forms of MS participated in the study.

There is currently no cure for MS, but these aggressive studies are just a small part of the effort to halt its progression.

Did you find this column helpful? Please share in the comments below. We also invite you to visit my personal website at www.themswire.com.

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 MS News Today or its parent company, BioNews, and are intended to spark discussion about multiple sclerosis issues.

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