What we're doing about progressive MS
There are currently no treatments or therapies that can slow, stop or reverse the damage caused by MS. We want to change that.
Our understanding of how disability progression in MS happens has improved over the years - but we still need more answers. Researchers are doing more and more research with the hope of finding new treatments for progressive MS.
Together with MS Societies from the USA, Canada, Italy, the Netherlands and the MS International Federation we've set up a collaboration aiming to speed up the development of treatments for people with progressive forms of the condition.
We have highlighted priority areas for progressive MS research, including:
- identifying and developing potential treatments
- clinical trial design
- symptom management and rehabilitation
We hope to be able to identify gaps in our knowledge about progressive MS and find ways of answering these key questions. We hope to be able to fund research that will speed up the development of treatments for progression in MS.
Next steps - Research Matters
The next stage of this process will be to fund research to overcome some of the challenges we face in setting up trials for progressive MS.
Roger Bastow has been living with primary progressive MS since 1996. He's been part of the MS Society's initiatives to improve clinical trials for progressive MS since 2010.
In a recent research blog post he outlined some of the challenges involved in setting up trials for progressive MS.
"The most difficult thing for a trial is that it is not easy to measure worsening in a person with progressive MS. How do you measure it? It's really hard to quantify and we don't yet have a perfect way of doing it."
"But all the time researchers are learning more about the causes of progressive MS. We just need to keep moving in that direction if we're going to make a breakthrough."
Research we're funding
In the meantime, find out more about projects we currently fund on progressive MS.
- Neuroprotective strategies: Amiloride Clinical Trial in Optic Neuritis (ACTION)
- Could phenytoin be neuroprotective in MS?
- Investigating new ways to repair myelin
- Are infections related to disability progression in people with MS? (Phase II)
- Managing nocturia in progressive MS
- The development of a telephone based therapy for people affected by primary and secondary progressive MS
- MS Society Cambridge Centre for Myelin Repair
- MS Society Edinburgh Centre for Translational Research
- How do mesenchymal stem cells from people with secondary progressive MS differ?
- Identifying neuroprotective treatments for people with MS
- MS Society Tissue Bank
- Can the body’s own stem cells be stimulated to make myelin?
All the time researchers are learning more about the causes of progressive MS. We just need to keep moving in that direction if we're going to make a breakthrough.Roger Bastow, living with progressive MS