UPDATED 23 December 2022
Two conflicting studies about HSCT and progressive MS have surfaced in the last two months. The first was an apropos article from Tomas Kalincik, PhD, of the Royal Melbourne Hospital in Australia in a late-breaking presentation at the 2022 meeting of the European Committee for Treatment and Research in Multiple Sclerosis (ECTRIMS). The second was by Matilde Inglese, MD, PhD, study author and professor of neurology at the University of Genoa, in Italy, which was published in Neurology on December 21, 2022.
The presentation was regarding AHSCT and Progressive MS. Kalinick's findings have long since been suspected, yet there are defintely some high-profile cases which contradict this new research. My mentor, George Goss, mentioned througout this blog, is one of them. Without George's detailed documentation of his experience, I might have not undergone my own such treatment. (My diagnosis at the time of my procedure was Relapsing MS.)
"Autologous hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (AHSCT) was not superior in preventing relapses or reducing disability progression compared with natalizumab (Tysabri) in progressive multiple sclerosis (MS), new research suggested."
Dr. Inglese found the exact opposite results for patients with SPMS. The majority of the patients with similar disease progress and symptoms actually fared better with HSCT than they did with DMTs. As summarized by MS News Today:
"More transplant recipients also experienced clinical improvements that were sustained after three and five years. After 10 years, disability scores improved slightly for transplanted patients compared with worse scores for patients on medications."
Matilde Inglese, MD, PhD, commented:
“Our results are encouraging, because while current treatments for secondary progressive MS have modest or small benefits, our study found stem cell transplants may not only delay disability longer than many other MS medications, they may also provide a slight improvement in symptoms.”
Read about her article in Neurology: https://n.neurology.org/content/early/2022/12/21/WNL.0000000000206750
I am not a doctor. I am a scientist (engineer) who has had MS since March 2013.