A new way to use MRI to more accurately diagnose MS

MRI scans of a brain

Lead researcher: Professor Frederik Barkhof

Based at: University College London

Grant we awarded: £37,480


About the project

MS is a complex condition, with many different symptoms, and so can be difficult to diagnose. The development of MRI scanning has greatly improved the speed and accuracy of diagnosis. But some people are still wrongly diagnosed.

One reason for this is because brain damage caused by MS can look very similar on an MRI scan to damage caused by other conditions. Professor Barkhof and his team have identified a feature of MRI scans that could help them distinguish these different types of damage. Areas of damage caused by other conditions tend to form around enlarged spaces that surround blood vessels, unlike MS lesions.

Being able to identify these areas of damage will make it easier to identify whether damage has been caused by MS or not.

How will it help people with MS?

Being able to distinguish between types of damage will help neurologists to rule out other conditions and provide a more accurate way to diagnose people with MS. Early diagnosis allows people with MS to be treated earlier, which leads to better health outcomes.

The difference you can make

Innovative techniques are crucial to developing our understanding of MS. Your support for this project would make sure people are diagnosed with MS accurately and early.

The next research breakthrough is in reach

Your donation will help stop MS.

  • Please enter an amount

    Our minimum donation is £2, please enter a different amount.

£30could process one blood sample, giving researchers crucial information about genes and the immune system.

£50could pay for an hour on a microscope, so scientists can study cells and tissue in greater detail and improve their understanding of the biology of MS.

£100could pay for half an hour of MRI use, so researchers can monitor the success of clinical trials and understand MS in more detail.

Every penny you give really does take us a step closer to stopping MS. Your donation will make a difference.

  • Please enter an amount

    Our minimum donation is £2, please enter a different amount.

£10a month could pay for lab equipment like microscope slides to study the building blocks of MS

£20a month could pay for lab equipment like petri dishes to grow bacteria important for studying genetics

£30a month could process a blood sample to help us understand what causes MS, so we can stop it in its tracks

Your regular donation means we can keep funding world class MS research with confidence. Together we will stop MS.

MS researcher at work in lab, using a pipette