First multi-drug clinical trial in MS successfully completed

Friday 12 October 2018

The results of the MS-SMART trial, announced today at European MS conference ECTRIMS, have ruled out 3 repurposed drugs for the treatment of progressive MS.

This is the first time a clinical trial in MS has tested multiple drugs at the same time. This method delivers answers up to ten years earlier than a standard clinical trial.

What was the MS SMART trial?

The Phase 2 trial tested 3 drugs, which are already used to treat other conditions, in 445 people with secondary progressive MS.

All three drugs were chosen based on promising results in experimental and early human studies. Unfortunately, the results showed that none of the 3 drugs tested have the potential to benefit people with progressive MS.

We've learnt a huge amount

Dr Susan Kohlhaas, our Director of Research, says: “We know this is extremely disappointing for people with progressive MS and everyone involved with the trial.

“However, we’ve learned a huge amount from this study, which will increase our chances of future success. We’re now better placed to identify and rule out treatments that won’t work, and have demonstrated how to run faster, cheaper trials successfully – meaning we can test more potential drugs, quicker.

"There are over 100,000 people living with MS in the UK and the community remains dedicated to finding effective treatments to fight this condition. We believe that, with the right investment, we can stop MS.”