b'Medicine and ResearchDespite the Pandemic, Despite the Pandemic, MS Advancements ContinueMS Advancements ContinueECTRIMS and CMSC presented latest in research By Dr. Daniel KantorEvery year more than 10,000 researchers,At ECTRIMS 2021, we heard more about neurologists, scientists, and other professionalsthe people with progressive forms of MS who from around the world meet to discuss thehad improvement in their disability from an latest research that has the potential to improveinvestigational medicine called ATA188, and the lives of people living with MS. For thehowusingaspecializedMRItechnique past two years, however, the annual meetingcalledMTR(magnetizationtransferratio) of the European Committee on Treatmentsuggeststhereisactualregrowthof white and Research in Multiple Sclerosis has notmatter or myelin (remyelination). In early 2022, been held in a European, or even American,we will be hearing the results of the phase 2 city, but virtually online. While there is debatetrial of ATA188 in people with progressive about the pros and cons of virtual meetings,MS. Depending on these results, we could see there is no question that progress, despite thea new treatment for progressive MS later this pandemic, with continued scientic discussionsdecade.and sharing of global insights, is good forForyears,peoplewithMShavebeen people living with MS. hearing about stem cells, and how they may ECTRIMS 2021 offer hope for MS. In the past, many of the As many people with MS know, there hasstem cells being studied were those that were destined to become different types of white been a decades-long debate on the role ofbloodcells.AtECTRIMS2021,weheard viruses in triggering or causing MS. The mostabout using a persons own mesenchymal likely virus to be involved in causing MS isstem cells, which are induced to secrete high the Epstein-Barr Virus. At ECTRIMS 2021, welevels of chemicals that help support growth heard about the phase 1 results of using otherand survival of neurons called neurotrophic peoples T-cells to target a persons own B-cellsfactors. In the phase 2 trial, MSC-NTFs injected that are infected with EBV. This way, insteadinto a persons spinal uid improved disability of using an MS therapy that gets rid of all ofin people with progressive MS.ones B-cells (after all, we need B-cells to ghtCMSC Orlandooff other infections, etc.), people with MS may be able to use a medicine that only gets ridTwo weeks after the virtual ECTRIMS of specic types of B-cells. meeting, the Consortium of MS Centers held msfocusmagazine.org 28'