Publications by authors named "Jennifer Graves"

210 Publications

Gut microbiome is associated with multiple sclerosis activity in children.

Ann Clin Transl Neurol 2021 Sep 19;8(9):1867-1883. Epub 2021 Aug 19.

Department of Neurology, University of California, San Francisco, San Francisco, California, USA.

Objective: To identify features of the gut microbiome associated with multiple sclerosis activity over time.

Methods: We used 16S ribosomal RNA sequencing from stool of 55 recently diagnosed pediatric-onset multiple sclerosis patients. Microbiome features included the abundance of individual microbes and networks identified from weighted genetic correlation network analyses. Prentice-Williams-Peterson Cox proportional hazards models estimated the associations between features and three disease activity outcomes: clinical relapses and both new/enlarging T2 lesions and new gadolinium-enhancing lesions on brain MRI. Analyses were adjusted for age, sex, and disease-modifying therapies.

Results: Participants were followed, on average, 2.1 years. Five microbes were nominally associated with all three disease activity outcomes after multiple testing correction. These included butyrate producers Odoribacter (relapse hazard ratio = 0.46, 95% confidence interval: 0.24, 0.88) and Butyricicoccus (relapse hazard ratio = 0.49, 95% confidence interval: 0.28, 0.88). Two networks of co-occurring gut microbes were significantly associated with a higher hazard of both MRI outcomes (gadolinium-enhancing lesion hazard ratios (95% confidence intervals) for Modules 32 and 33 were 1.29 (1.08, 1.54) and 1.42 (1.18, 1.71), respectively; T2 lesion hazard ratios (95% confidence intervals) for Modules 32 and 33 were 1.34 (1.15, 1.56) and 1.41 (1.21, 1.64), respectively). Metagenomic predictions of these networks demonstrated enrichment for amino acid biosynthesis pathways.

Interpretation: Both individual and networks of gut microbes were associated with longitudinal multiple sclerosis activity. Known functions and metagenomic predictions of these microbes suggest the important role of butyrate and amino acid biosynthesis pathways. This provides strong support for future development of personalized microbiome interventions to modify multiple sclerosis disease activity.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/acn3.51441DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8419410PMC
September 2021

What telomeres teach us about MS.

Mult Scler Relat Disord 2021 Sep 14;54:103084. Epub 2021 Jun 14.

Department of Neurosciences, University of California, San Diego, USA. Electronic address:

While the precise mechanisms driving progressive forms of MS are not fully understood, patient age has clear impact on disease phenotype. The very young with MS have high relapse rates and virtually no progressive disease, whereas older patients tend to experience more rapid disability accumulation with few relapses. Defining a patient's biological age may offer more precision in determining the role of aging processes in MS phenotype and pathophysiology than just working with an individual's birthdate. The most well recognized measurement of an individual's "biological clock" is telomere length (TL). While TL may differ across tissue types in an individual, most cells TL correlate well with leukocyte TL (LTL), which is the most common biomarker used for aging. LTL has been associated with risk for aging related diseases and most recently with higher levels of disability and brain atrophy in people living with MS. LTL explains 15% of the overall association of chronological age with MS disability level. While LTL may be used just as a biomarker of overall somatic aging processes, triggering of the DNA damage response by telomere attrition leads to senescence pathways that are likely highly relevant to a chronic autoimmune disease. Considering reproductive aging factors, particularly ovarian aging in women, which correlates with LTL and oocyte telomere length, may complement measurements of somatic aging in understanding MS progression. The key to stopping non-relapse related progression in MS might lie in targeting pathways related to biological aging effects on the immune and nervous systems.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.msard.2021.103084DOI Listing
September 2021

Familial History of Autoimmune Disorders Among Patients With Pediatric Multiple Sclerosis.

Neurol Neuroimmunol Neuroinflamm 2021 09 5;8(5). Epub 2021 Aug 5.

From the University of Texas Southwestern (B.M.G.), Department of Neurology, Department of Pediatrics, Dallas; Data Coordinating and Analysis Center (T.C.C., S.S.R., K.D.), University of Utah, Salt Lake City; Washington University (S.S.M.), St. Louis, MO; University of Alabama Birmingham (J.M.N.); The University of Texas Southwestern (P.P.), Department of Neurology, Dallas; Department of Radiology (S.L., M.G.), Washington University in St. Louis, MO; Jacobs Pediatric Multiple Sclerosis Center (B.W.-G.), State University of New York at Buffalo, NY; Mayo Clinic Pediatric Multiple Sclerosis Center (M.R., J.-M.T.), Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN; Pediatric Multiple Sclerosis Center (G.S.A.), Loma Linda University Children's Hospital, CA; Lourie Center for Pediatric Multiple Sclerosis (A.B.), Stony Brook University Hospital, NY; Epidemiology (L.F.B.), University of California, Berkeley; Department of Neurology (J.W.R.), University of Utah, Salt Lake City; Pediatric Multiple Sclerosis and Related Disorders Program (M.P.G., L.A.B.), Boston Children's Hospital, MA; Primary Children's Hospital (M.C.), University of Utah, Salt Lake City; Partners Pediatric Multiple Sclerosis Center (T.C.), Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston; Center for Pediatric-Onset Demyelinating Disease (Y.C.H.), Children's Hospital of Alabama, University of Alabama, Birmingham; Children's National Medical Center (I.L.K.), Washington, DC; Pediatric Multiple Sclerosis Center (J.H.), University of California San Francisco; The Blue Bird Circle Clinic for Multiple Sclerosis (T.E.L.), Texas Children's Hospital, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston; Mellen Center for Multiple Sclerosis (M.R.), Cleveland Clinic, OH; Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago (J.P.R.), IL; Rocky Mountain Multiple Sclerosis Center (T.L.S.), Children's Hospital Colorado, University of Colorado at Denver, Aurora; Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (A.T.W.), PA; Pediatric Multiple Sclerosis Center (L.K.), New York University; Pediatric Multiple Sclerosis Center (J.G.), University of California San Diego; and Pediatric Multiple Sclerosis Center (E.W.), University of California San Francisco.

Background And Objective: The objective of this study was to determine whether family members of patients with pediatric multiple sclerosis (MS) have an increased prevalence of autoimmune conditions compared with controls.

Methods: Data collected during a pediatric MS case-control study of risk factors included information about various autoimmune diseases in family members. The frequency of these disorders was compared between cases and controls.

Results: There was an increased rate of autoimmune diseases among family members of pediatric MS cases compared with controls with first-degree history of MS excluded (OR = 2.27, 95% CI 1.71-3.01, < 0.001). There was an increased rate of MS among second-degree relatives of pediatric MS cases compared with controls (OR = 3.47, 95% CI 1.36-8.86, = 0.009). The OR for MS was 2.64 when restricted to maternal relatives and 6.37 when restricted to paternal relatives.

Discussion: The increased rates of autoimmune disorders, including thyroid disorders and MS among families of patients with pediatric MS, suggest shared genetic factors among families with children diagnosed with pediatric MS.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1212/NXI.0000000000001049DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8362349PMC
September 2021

Concerning an Article by Ehl et al.: False Premise Leads to False Conclusions.

Sex Dev 2021 29;15(4):286-288. Epub 2021 Jul 29.

School of Life Sciences, Latrobe University, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1159/000518374DOI Listing
July 2021

CNS Lymphocytic Vasculitis in a Young Woman With COVID-19 Infection.

Neurol Neuroimmunol Neuroinflamm 2021 09 28;8(5). Epub 2021 Jul 28.

From the Department of Neurosciences (G.M.T., T.R., E.A.B., A.M., J.S.G.), University of California San Diego, School of Medicine; Department of Pathology (V.G.), Department of Rheumatology (A.K.), and Department of Infectious Diseases (M.R.), University of California San Diego, La Jolla; and Department of Neurology (T.R.), University of Florida, College of Medicine, Gainesville.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1212/NXI.0000000000001048DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8362344PMC
September 2021

A smartphone sensor-based digital outcome assessment of multiple sclerosis.

Mult Scler 2021 Jul 14:13524585211028561. Epub 2021 Jul 14.

UCSF Weill Institute for Neurosciences and Department of Neurology, University of California San Francisco, San Francisco, CA, USA.

Background: Sensor-based monitoring tools fill a critical gap in multiple sclerosis (MS) research and clinical care.

Objective: The aim of this study is to assess performance characteristics of the Floodlight Proof-of-Concept (PoC) app.

Methods: In a 24-week study (clinicaltrials.gov: NCT02952911), smartphone-based active tests and passive monitoring assessed cognition (electronic Symbol Digit Modalities Test), upper extremity function (Pinching Test, Draw a Shape Test), and gait and balance (Static Balance Test, U-Turn Test, Walk Test, Passive Monitoring). Intraclass correlation coefficients (ICCs) and age- or sex-adjusted Spearman's rank correlation determined test-retest reliability and correlations with clinical and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) outcome measures, respectively.

Results: Seventy-six people with MS (PwMS) and 25 healthy controls were enrolled. In PwMS, ICCs were moderate-to-good (ICC(2,1) = 0.61-0.85) across tests. Correlations with domain-specific standard clinical disability measures were significant for all tests in the cognitive ( = 0.82, < 0.001), upper extremity function (|r|= 0.40-0.64, all < 0.001), and gait and balance domains ( = -0.25 to -0.52, all < 0.05; except for Static Balance Test: = -0.20, > 0.05). Most tests also correlated with Expanded Disability Status Scale, 29-item Multiple Sclerosis Impact Scale items or subscales, and/or normalized brain volume.

Conclusion: The Floodlight PoC app captures reliable and clinically relevant measures of functional impairment in MS, supporting its potential use in clinical research and practice.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/13524585211028561DOI Listing
July 2021

Quantification of smooth pursuit dysfunction in multiple sclerosis.

Mult Scler Relat Disord 2021 Sep 5;54:103073. Epub 2021 Jun 5.

Dept. of Neurosciences, University of California San Diego, School of Medicine, 9500 Gilman Drive, La Jolla, CA 92093, USA. Electronic address:

Background: Smooth pursuit dysfunction is common in MS, but rarely quantified and may be missed on exam.

Methods: NeuroFitONE™ smooth pursuit performance measures were compared between MS (n = 20) and healthy control (n = 19) participants.

Results: Compared to controls, MS patients had lower proportion of smooth pursuit (0.63 vs. 0.73; p = 0.047), increased directional (10.1 vs. 8°; p = 0.014) and speed noise (4.3 vs. 3.1°/sec; p = 0.021) and reduced initiation acceleration (96.83 vs. 115.33°/sec; p = 0.061). Significant univariate correlations with clinical scores (EDSS, T25-FW) were observed.

Conclusion: Smooth pursuit dysfunction in MS can be readily quantified and distinguishes MS eyes from healthy controls.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.msard.2021.103073DOI Listing
September 2021

Encephalitis and Myelitis in a Young Woman: Overlap Syndrome, Thyroiditis, and Occult Tumor From the National Multiple Sclerosis Society Case Conference Proceedings.

Neurol Neuroimmunol Neuroinflamm 2021 07 23;8(5). Epub 2021 Jun 23.

From the Department of Neurology (N.Z.E.), Kaiser Permanente Washington, Seattle; Department of Neurology (A.W.), University of Washington, Seattle; Neuroimmunology (T.V.), Stanford University of California; Colangelo College of Business (T.V.), Grand Canyon University, Phoenix, AZ; Department of Neurology (R.P.L.), Wayne State University, Detroit, MI; Department of Neurology (A.G.), University of Rochester, NY; Department of Neurosciences (J.G.), University of California at San Diego; Department of Neurology and Program in Immunology (S.S.Z.), University of California San Francisco; Laboratory of Neuroimmunology of Professor Laurence Steinman (E.M.F., T.C.F.), Stanford University School of Medicine, CA; Department of Neurology (S.D.N.), Johns Hopkins Hospital, Baltimore, MD.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1212/NXI.0000000000001026DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8223881PMC
July 2021

Current Status and Future Strategies for Mentoring Women in Neurology.

Neurology 2021 07 4;97(1):30-37. Epub 2021 Jun 4.

From the Lebanon VA Medical Center (A.S.F.), PA; Massachusetts General Hospital (I.C.G.), Boston; University of Oklahoma College of Medicine (D.S.), Oklahoma City; Rady Children's Hospital-San Diego (R.M.T., J.S.G.), CA; Drexel University College of Medicine (J.P.), Philadelphia, PA; Stanford Center for Sleep Sciences and Medicine (L.S.); Sierra Pacific Mental Illness Research Education and Clinical Centers (L.S.), VA Palo Alto Health Care System, Palo Alto; UCSF Medical Center (C.L.-H.); Department of Neurosciences (J.S.G.), UCSD, San Diego, CA; Imperial College London (S.S.), UK; University of Mississippi Medical Center (C.O.S.N.), Jackson; and Penn State Hershey Medical Center (A.S.F.).

The American Academy of Neurology's (AAN) 2017 Gender Disparity Report identified improving mentorship as a key intervention to fill the leadership and pay gaps for women in neurology. Here we summarize the literature on mentoring women, provide an outline of ideal components of programs geared toward closing gender gaps, and present a mentoring program for AAN members. The strategies discussed share similarities with those for closing gaps related to race, ethnicity, and religion. Developing effective mentorship and sponsorship programs is essential to ensure a sufficiently diverse pool of academic faculty and private practitioners and to establish equal representation in leadership roles in this field.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1212/WNL.0000000000012242DOI Listing
July 2021

Artificial intelligence extension of the OSCAR-IB criteria.

Ann Clin Transl Neurol 2021 07 19;8(7):1528-1542. Epub 2021 May 19.

Division of Neurology, Department of Pediatrics, Hospital for Sick Children, Division of Neurosciences and Mental Health SickKids Research Institute, University of Toronto, Canada.

Artificial intelligence (AI)-based diagnostic algorithms have achieved ambitious aims through automated image pattern recognition. For neurological disorders, this includes neurodegeneration and inflammation. Scalable imaging technology for big data in neurology is optical coherence tomography (OCT). We highlight that OCT changes observed in the retina, as a window to the brain, are small, requiring rigorous quality control pipelines. There are existing tools for this purpose. Firstly, there are human-led validated consensus quality control criteria (OSCAR-IB) for OCT. Secondly, these criteria are embedded into OCT reporting guidelines (APOSTEL). The use of the described annotation of failed OCT scans advances machine learning. This is illustrated through the present review of the advantages and disadvantages of AI-based applications to OCT data. The neurological conditions reviewed here for the use of big data include Alzheimer disease, stroke, multiple sclerosis (MS), Parkinson disease, and epilepsy. It is noted that while big data is relevant for AI, ownership is complex. For this reason, we also reached out to involve representatives from patient organizations and the public domain in addition to clinical and research centers. The evidence reviewed can be grouped in a five-point expansion of the OSCAR-IB criteria to embrace AI (OSCAR-AI). The review concludes by specific recommendations on how this can be achieved practically and in compliance with existing guidelines.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/acn3.51320DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8283174PMC
July 2021

Towards complete and error-free genome assemblies of all vertebrate species.

Nature 2021 Apr 28;592(7856):737-746. Epub 2021 Apr 28.

UQ Genomics, University of Queensland, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia.

High-quality and complete reference genome assemblies are fundamental for the application of genomics to biology, disease, and biodiversity conservation. However, such assemblies are available for only a few non-microbial species. To address this issue, the international Genome 10K (G10K) consortium has worked over a five-year period to evaluate and develop cost-effective methods for assembling highly accurate and nearly complete reference genomes. Here we present lessons learned from generating assemblies for 16 species that represent six major vertebrate lineages. We confirm that long-read sequencing technologies are essential for maximizing genome quality, and that unresolved complex repeats and haplotype heterozygosity are major sources of assembly error when not handled correctly. Our assemblies correct substantial errors, add missing sequence in some of the best historical reference genomes, and reveal biological discoveries. These include the identification of many false gene duplications, increases in gene sizes, chromosome rearrangements that are specific to lineages, a repeated independent chromosome breakpoint in bat genomes, and a canonical GC-rich pattern in protein-coding genes and their regulatory regions. Adopting these lessons, we have embarked on the Vertebrate Genomes Project (VGP), an international effort to generate high-quality, complete reference genomes for all of the roughly 70,000 extant vertebrate species and to help to enable a new era of discovery across the life sciences.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41586-021-03451-0DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8081667PMC
April 2021

APOSTEL 2.0 Recommendations for Reporting Quantitative Optical Coherence Tomography Studies.

Neurology 2021 07 28;97(2):68-79. Epub 2021 Apr 28.

From the Department of Neurology, Medical Faculty (A.A., O.A., H.-P.H., O.M., S.M., M.R., P.A.), Heinrich-Heine University Düsseldorf, Germany; Department of Neurology (A.C.-H., A.J.G.), University of California San Francisco; Departments of Neurology, Population Health, and Ophthalmology (L.J.B., R.K.), NYU Grossman School of Medicine, New York, NY; Mulier Institute (L.B.), Centre for Research on Sports in Society, Utrecht, the Netherlands; Scientific Institute San Raffaele (P.B.), Milan, Italy; Centre for Public Health (A.A.B.), Queen's University Belfast, Northern Ireland, UK; Division of Neuroimmunology (P.A.C., S. Saidha), Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD; Departments of Clinical Neurosciences and Surgery (F.C.), University of Calgary, Alberta, Canada; Institut d'Investigacións Biomediques August Pi iSunyer (IDIBAPS) and Hospital Clinic (B.S.-D., E.H.M.-L., P.V.), University of Barcelona, Spain; Bascom Palmer Eye Institute (D.C.D.), University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, FL; Department of Ophthalmology (N.F.), University Medical Center, Göttingen; Department of Ophthalmology (R.P.F., F.G.H.), University of Bonn, Germany; Department of Neurology (J.L.F., G.P.-J.), Rigshospitalet Glostrup and University of Copenhagen, Denmark; Laboratory of Neuroimmunology (E.F., T.F.), Stanford University School of Medicine, CA; Institute of Ophthalmology (D.G.-H.), National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Biomedical Research Centre at Moorfields Eye Hospital NHS Foundation Trust and UCL Institute of Ophthalmology (D.G.-H.), London, UK; Biocruces Bizkaia Health Research Institute (I.G.), Barakaldo, Spain; Department of Neurosciences (J.S.G.), University of California, San Diego; Brain and Mind Centre (H.-P.H.), University of Sydney, Australia; Department of Neurology (H.-P.H.), Medical University of Vienna, Austria; Institute of Clinical Neuroimmunology (J.H.), LMU Hospital, Ludwig-Maximilians Universität München, Germany; UConn Health Comprehensive MS Center, Division of Multiple Sclerosis and Neuroimmunology, Department of Neurology (J.I.), University of Connecticut School of Medicine, Farmington; Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences (A.K.), Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia; Department of Neurology (B.K., T.K.), Klinikum rechts der Isar, School of Medicine, Technical University of Munich, Germany; Department of Medicine and Radiology (S.K.), University of Melbourne, Australia; Department of Neurology with Institute of Translational Neurology (J.K.), University of Münster; Eye Center, Medical Center, Faculty of Medicine (W.A.L.), University of Freiburg, Germany; Experimental Neurophysiology Unit (L.L.), Institute of Experimental Neurology (INSPE), IRCCS San Raffaele, University Vita-Salute San Raffaele, Milan, Italy; Lille Neurosciences & Cognition (O.O.), Univ Lille, Inserm, CHU Lille, U1172-LilNCog (JPARC), France; Experimental and Clinical Research Center (F.P., H.G.Z., A.U.B.), Max Delbrück Center for Molecular Medicine and Charité-Universitätsmedizin Berlin, corporate member of Freie Universität Berlin, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, and Berlin Institute of Health, Germany; Moorfields Eye Hospital (A.P.), The National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery, Queen Square, UCL Institute of Neurology, London, UK; Neuro-ophthalmology Expert Center (A.P.), Amsterdam UMC, the Netherlands; Department of Neurology, First Faculty of Medicine (J.L.P.), Charles University and General University Hospital in Prague, Czech Republic; Department of Ophthalmology (G.R.), Ramon y Cajal Hospital, Medicine University of Alcalá, Madrid, Spain; Department of Neurology (M.R.), Center for Neurology and Neuropsychiatry, LVR-Klinikum, Heinrich-Heine-University Düsseldorf, Germany; Department of Neurology (S. Schippling), University Hospital Zurich, Switzerland; Departments of Ophthalmology, Neuroscience, and Physiology (J.S.S.), NYU Langone Health, NYU Grossman School of Medicine, New York; Departments of Biomedical Engineering, Electrical and Computer Engineering (J.S.S.), NYU Tandon School of Engineering, Brooklyn, NY; Thomas Jefferson University Medical College (R.C.S.), Philadelphia, PA; Queen Square MS Centre, Department of Neuroinflammation (A.T.), UCL Institute of Neurology, University College London, UK; Departments of Ophthalmology and Clinical Research (S.W.), Bern University Hospital, University of Bern, Switzerland; Division of Neurology, Department of Pediatrics (E.A.Y.), Hospital for Sick Children, Division of Neurosciences and Mental Health SickKids Research Institute, University of Toronto, Canada; Department of Clinical Neurosciences (P.Y.-W.-M.), University of Cambridge; Moorfields Eye Hospital (P.Y.-W.-M.), London, UK; University of California (A.U.B.), Irvine; and IMSVISUAL (A.A., A.C.-H., O.A., L.J.B., L.B., P.A.C., F.C., J.L.F., E.F., T.F., I.G., J.S.G., A.J.G., H.-P.H., J.H., J.I., R.K., A.K., B.K., T.K., J.K., L.L., E.H.M.-L., S.M., O.O., F.P., A.P., G.P.-J., J.L.P., M.R., S. Saidha, S. Schippling, R.C.S., P.V., E.A.Y., H.G.Z., A.U.B., P.A.), International Multiple Sclerosis Visual System Consortium, Middleton, WI.

Objective: To update the consensus recommendations for reporting of quantitative optical coherence tomography (OCT) study results, thus revising the previously published Advised Protocol for OCT Study Terminology and Elements (APOSTEL) recommendations.

Methods: To identify studies reporting quantitative OCT results, we performed a PubMed search for the terms "quantitative" and "optical coherence tomography" from 2015 to 2017. Corresponding authors of the identified publications were invited to provide feedback on the initial APOSTEL recommendations via online surveys following the principle of a modified Delphi method. The results were evaluated and discussed by a panel of experts and changes to the initial recommendations were proposed. A final survey was recirculated among the corresponding authors to obtain a majority vote on the proposed changes.

Results: A total of 116 authors participated in the surveys, resulting in 15 suggestions, of which 12 were finally accepted and incorporated into an updated 9-point checklist. We harmonized the nomenclature of the outer retinal layers, added the exact area of measurement to the description of volume scans, and suggested reporting device-specific features. We advised to address potential bias in manual segmentation or manual correction of segmentation errors. References to specific reporting guidelines and room light conditions were removed. The participants' consensus with the recommendations increased from 80% for the previous APOSTEL version to greater than 90%.

Conclusions: The modified Delphi method resulted in an expert-led guideline (evidence Class III; Grading of Recommendations, Assessment, Development and Evaluations [GRADE] criteria) concerning study protocol, acquisition device, acquisition settings, scanning protocol, funduscopic imaging, postacquisition data selection, postacquisition analysis, nomenclature and abbreviations, and statistical approach. It will be essential to update these recommendations to new research and practices regularly.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1212/WNL.0000000000012125DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8279566PMC
July 2021

Treating MS after surviving PML: Discrete strategies for rescue, remission, and recovery patient 2: From the National Multiple Sclerosis Society Case Conference Proceedings.

Neurol Neuroimmunol Neuroinflamm 2021 01 15;8(1). Epub 2020 Dec 15.

From the Department of Neurology (R.A.C., E. Melamed, T.C.V., E. Meltzer), Dell Medical School, University of Texas at Austin; Department of Ophthalmology (N.H.), University of Texas Southwestern, Dallas; Wellness Care Centers and Pediatric Rehabilitation (J.S.), Denton, TX; Ascension Seton Medical Center (M.S.), Austin, TX; National Institutes of Health (E.O.M.), Bethesda, MD; Departments of Neurology, and Biochemistry, Microbiology and Immunology (R.P.L.), Wayne State University, Detroit, MI; Colangelo College of Business (T.C.V.), Grand Canyon University, Phoenix, AZ; Department of Neurology (A.G.), University of Rochester, NY; Department of Computer Science (O.K.), Texas State University, San Marcos; Division of Microbiology and Immunology (M.S.P.), Yerkes National Primate Research Center, and Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine (M.S.P.), Emory University, Atlanta, GA; The National Multiple Sclerosis Society (K.C.), New York, NY; Department of Neurology (J.S.G.), University of California at San Diego; Department of Neurology (S.N.), Johns Hopkins Hospital, Bethesda, MD; Department of Neurology and Program in Immunology (S.S.Z.), University of California, San Francisco; andDepartments of Neurology, Ophthalmology & Neurosurgery (E.M.F., T.C.F.), Dell Medical School at the University of Texas at Austin.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1212/NXI.0000000000000930DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7803334PMC
January 2021

Treating MS after surviving PML: Discrete strategies for rescue, remission, and recovery patient 1: From the National Multiple Sclerosis Society Case Conference Proceedings.

Neurol Neuroimmunol Neuroinflamm 2021 01 15;8(1). Epub 2020 Dec 15.

From the University of Rochester (N.A.), NY. N. Anadani is now with Department of Neurology, University of Oklahoma Health Science Center; Department of Neurology (M.H., A.D.G.), University of Rochester, NY; Department of Neurology (R.A.C., E.M., T.C.V.), Dell Medical School at the University of Texas at Austin; Department of Neurology (R.L.), Wayne State University, Detroit, MI; The National Multiple Sclerosis Society (K.C.), New York, NY; Laboratory of Molecular Medicine and Neuroscience (E.O.M.), Neurological Institute of Neurological Disorder and Stroke (Y.J.), Bethesda, MD. Y. Jassam is now with Department of Neurology, The University of Kansas Health System; Colangelo College of Business (T.C.V.), Grand Canyon University, Phoenix, AZ; Division of Microbiology and Immunology (M.S.P.), Yerkes National Primate Research Center, and Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine (M.S.P.), Emory University, Atlanta, GA; Department of Neurosciences (J.S.G.), University of California at San Diego; Department of Neurology (S.N.), Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD; Department of Neurology and Program in Immunology (S.S.Z.), University of California San Francisco; and Department of Neurology, Neurosurgery, and Ophthalmology (E.M.F., T.C.F.), Dell Medical School at the University of Texas at Austin.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1212/NXI.0000000000000929DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7803340PMC
January 2021

Platypus and echidna genomes reveal mammalian biology and evolution.

Nature 2021 Apr 6;592(7856):756-762. Epub 2021 Jan 6.

Tree of Life Programme, Wellcome Sanger Institute, Cambridge, UK.

Egg-laying mammals (monotremes) are the only extant mammalian outgroup to therians (marsupial and eutherian animals) and provide key insights into mammalian evolution. Here we generate and analyse reference genomes of the platypus (Ornithorhynchus anatinus) and echidna (Tachyglossus aculeatus), which represent the only two extant monotreme lineages. The nearly complete platypus genome assembly has anchored almost the entire genome onto chromosomes, markedly improving the genome continuity and gene annotation. Together with our echidna sequence, the genomes of the two species allow us to detect the ancestral and lineage-specific genomic changes that shape both monotreme and mammalian evolution. We provide evidence that the monotreme sex chromosome complex originated from an ancestral chromosome ring configuration. The formation of such a unique chromosome complex may have been facilitated by the unusually extensive interactions between the multi-X and multi-Y chromosomes that are shared by the autosomal homologues in humans. Further comparative genomic analyses unravel marked differences between monotremes and therians in haptoglobin genes, lactation genes and chemosensory receptor genes for smell and taste that underlie the ecological adaptation of monotremes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41586-020-03039-0DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8081666PMC
April 2021

U-turn speed is a valid and reliable smartphone-based measure of multiple sclerosis-related gait and balance impairment.

Gait Posture 2021 02 25;84:120-126. Epub 2020 Nov 25.

F. Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd, Basel, 4070, Switzerland; Department of Economics, Baden-Wuerttemberg Cooperative State University, Loerrach, 79539, Germany. Electronic address:

Background: People living with multiple sclerosis (MS) experience impairments in gait and mobility, that are not fully captured with manually timed walking tests or rating scales administered during periodic clinical visits. We have developed a smartphone-based assessment of ambulation performance, the 5 U-Turn Test (5UTT), a quantitative self-administered test of U-turn ability while walking, for people with MS (PwMS).

Research Question: What is the test-retest reliability and concurrent validity of U-turn speed, an unsupervised self-assessment of gait and balance impairment, measured using a body-worn smartphone during the 5UTT?

Methods: 76 PwMS and 25 healthy controls (HCs) participated in a cross-sectional non-randomised interventional feasibility study. The 5UTT was self-administered daily and the median U-turn speed, measured during a 14-day session, was compared against existing validated in-clinic measures of MS-related disability.

Results: U-turn speed, measured during a 14-day session from the 5UTT, demonstrated good-to-excellent test-retest reliability in PwMS alone and combined with HCs (intraclass correlation coefficient [ICC] = 0.87 [95 % CI: 0.80-0.92]) and moderate-to-excellent reliability in HCs alone (ICC = 0.88 [95 % CI: 0.69-0.96]). U-turn speed was significantly correlated with in-clinic measures of walking speed, physical fatigue, ambulation impairment, overall MS-related disability and patients' self-perception of quality of life, at baseline, Week 12 and Week 24. The minimal detectable change of the U-turn speed from the 5UTT was low (19.42 %) in PwMS and indicates a good precision of this measurement tool when compared with conventional in-clinic measures of walking performance.

Significance: The frequent self-assessment of turn speed, as an outcome measure from a smartphone-based U-turn test, may represent an ecologically valid digital solution to remotely and reliably monitor gait and balance impairment in a home environment during MS clinical trials and practice.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.gaitpost.2020.11.025DOI Listing
February 2021

Gut microbiota-specific IgA B cells traffic to the CNS in active multiple sclerosis.

Sci Immunol 2020 11;5(53)

Department of Neurology, UCSF Weill Institute for Neurosciences, University of California, San Francisco, San Francisco, CA 94158, USA.

Changes in gut microbiota composition and a diverse role of B cells have recently been implicated in multiple sclerosis (MS), a central nervous system (CNS) autoimmune disease. Immunoglobulin A (IgA) is a key regulator at the mucosal interface. However, whether gut microbiota shape IgA responses and what role IgA cells have in neuroinflammation are unknown. Here, we identify IgA-bound taxa in MS and show that IgA-producing cells specific for MS-associated taxa traffic to the inflamed CNS, resulting in a strong, compartmentalized IgA enrichment in active MS and other neuroinflammatory diseases. Unlike previously characterized polyreactive anti-commensal IgA responses, CNS IgA cross-reacts with surface structures on specific bacterial strains but not with brain tissue. These findings establish gut microbiota-specific IgA cells as a systemic mediator in MS and suggest a critical role of mucosal B cells during active neuroinflammation with broad implications for IgA as an informative biomarker and IgA-producing cells as an immune subset to harness for therapeutic interventions.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1126/sciimmunol.abc7191DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8043673PMC
November 2020

Biosensor vital sign detects multiple sclerosis progression.

Ann Clin Transl Neurol 2021 01 19;8(1):4-14. Epub 2020 Nov 19.

UCSF Weill Institute for Neurosciences, Department of Neurology, University of California San Francisco, San Francisco, CA, USA.

Objective: To determine whether a small, wearable multisensor device can discriminate between progressive versus relapsing multiple sclerosis (MS) and capture limb progression over a short interval, using finger and foot tap data.

Methods: Patients with MS were followed prospectively during routine clinic visits approximately every 6 months. At each visit, participants performed finger and foot taps wearing the MYO-band, which includes accelerometer, gyroscope, and surface electromyogram sensors. Metrics of within-patient limb progression were created by combining the change in signal waveform features over time. The resulting upper (UE) and lower (LE) extremity metrics' discrimination of progressive versus relapsing MS were evaluated with calculation of AUROC. Comparisons with Expanded Disability Status Scale (EDSS) scores were made with Pearson correlation.

Results: Participants included 53 relapsing and 15 progressive MS (72% female, baseline mean age 48 years, median disease duration 11 years, median EDSS 2.5, median 10 months follow-up). The final summary metrics differentiated relapsing from secondary progressive MS with AUROC UE 0.93 and LE 0.96. The metrics were associated with baseline EDSS (UE P = 0.0003, LE P = 0.0007). While most had no change in EDSS during the short follow-up, several had evidence of progression by the multisensor metrics.

Interpretation: Within a short follow-up interval, this novel multisensor algorithm distinguished progressive from relapsing MS and captured changes in limb function. Inexpensive, noninvasive and easy to use, this novel outcome is readily adaptable to clinical practice and trials as a MS vital sign. This approach also holds promise to monitor limb dysfunction in other neurological diseases.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/acn3.51187DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7818086PMC
January 2021

Interocular Difference in Retinal Nerve Fiber Layer Thickness Predicts Optic Neuritis in Pediatric-Onset Multiple Sclerosis.

J Neuroophthalmol 2020 Oct 22. Epub 2020 Oct 22.

Division of Neurology (ATW, JRS, AML, GWL), Children's Hospital of Philadelphia and Departments of Neurology and Pediatrics (ATW), Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; Departments of Neurology (LB) and Ophthalmology (GH), Boston Children's Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts; Division of Neuroimmunology and Glial Biology (AJG, EW), Department of Neurology, Weill Institute of Neurosciences, University of California San Francisco, San Francisco, California; Department of Neurology and Neurotherapeutics (DC, BG), University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, Texas; Department of Neurology, University of California San Diego, San Diego, California; and Department of Ophthalmology (AJG), University of California San Francisco, San Francisco, California.

Background: Optical coherence tomography (OCT) is capable of quantifying retinal damage. Defining the extent of anterior visual pathway injury is important in multiple sclerosis (MS) as a way to document evidence of prior disease, including subclinical injury, and setting a baseline for patients early in the course of disease. Retinal nerve fiber layer (RNFL) thickness is typically classified as low if values fall outside of a predefined range for a healthy population. In adults, an interocular difference (IOD) in RNFL thickness greater than 5 μm identified a history of unilateral optic neuritis (ON). Through our PERCEPTION (PEdiatric Research Collaboration ExPloring Tests in Ocular Neuroimmunology) study, we explored whether RNFL IOD informs on remote ON in a multicenter pediatric-onset MS (POMS) cohort.

Methods: POMS (defined using consensus criteria and first attack <18 years) patients were recruited from 4 academic centers. A clinical history of ON (>6 months prior to an OCT scan) was confirmed by medical record review. RNFL thickness was measured on Spectralis machines (Heidelberg, Germany). Using a cohort of healthy controls from our centers tested on the same machines, RNFL thickness <86 μm (<2 SDs below the mean) was defined as abnormal. Based on previously published findings in adults, an RNFL IOD >5 μm was defined as abnormal. The proportions of POMS participants with RNFL thinning (<86 μm) and abnormal IOD (>5 μm) were calculated. Logistic regression was used to determine whether IOD was associated with remote ON.

Results: A total of 157 participants with POMS (mean age 15.2 years, SD 3.2; 67 [43%] with remote ON) were enrolled. RNFL thinning occurred in 45 of 90 (50%) ON eyes and 24 of 224 (11%) non-ON eyes. An IOD >5 μm was associated with a history of remote ON (P < 0.001). An IOD >5 μm occurred in 62 participants, 40 (65%) with remote ON. Among 33 participants with remote ON but normal RNFL values (≥86 μm in both eyes), 14 (42%) were confirmed to have ON by IOD criteria (>5 μm).

Conclusions: In POMS, the diagnostic yield of OCT in confirming remote ON is enhanced by considering RNFL IOD, especially for those patients with RNFL thickness for each eye in the normal range. An IOD >5 μm in patients with previous visual symptoms suggests a history of remote ON.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/WNO.0000000000001070DOI Listing
October 2020

Assessment of Pediatric Optic Neuritis Visual Acuity Outcomes at 6 Months.

JAMA Ophthalmol 2020 12;138(12):1253-1261

Department of Ophthalmology, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota.

Importance: Optic neuritis (ON) in children is uncommon. There are limited prospective data for visual acuity (VA) outcomes, associated diseases, and neuroimaging findings. Prospective data from a large sample would be useful for counseling families on treatment decisions and prognosis.

Objective: To prospectively study children with a first episode of ON, describe VA after 6 months, and ascertain the network's (Pediatric Eye Disease Investigator Group and Neuro-Ophthalmology Research Disease Investigator Consortium) ability to enroll pediatric patients with ON prospectively.

Design, Setting, And Participants: This nonrandomized cohort study was conducted from September 20, 2016, to July 20, 2018, at 23 sites in the United States and Canada in pediatric ophthalmology or neuro-ophthalmology clinics. A total of 44 children (aged 3-15 years) presented with a first episode of ON (visual loss, pain on eye movements, or both) within 2 weeks of symptom onset and at least 1 of the following in the affected eye: a distance high-contrast VA (HCVA) deficit of at least 0.2 logMAR below age-based norms, diminished color vision, abnormal visual field, or optic disc swelling. Exclusion criteria included preexisting ocular abnormalities or a previous episode of ON.

Main Outcomes And Measures: Primary outcomes were monocular HCVA and low-contrast VA at 6 months. Secondary outcomes were neuroimaging, associated diagnoses, and antibodies for neuromyelitis optica and myelin oligodendrocyte glycoprotein.

Results: A total of 44 children (mean age [SD], 10.2 [3.5] years; 26 boys [59%]; 23 White individuals [52%]; 54 eyes) were enrolled in the study. Sixteen patients (36%) had bilateral ON. Magnetic resonance imaging revealed white matter lesions in 23 children (52%). Of these children, 8 had myelin oligodendrocyte glycoprotein-associated demyelination (18%), 7 had acute disseminated encephalomyelitis (16%), 5 had multiple sclerosis (11%), and 3 had neuromyelitis optica (7%). The baseline mean HCVA was 0.95 logMAR (20/200), which improved by a mean 0.76 logMAR (95% CI, 0.54-0.99; range, -0.70 to 1.80) to 0.12 logMAR (20/25) at 6 months. The baseline mean distance low-contrast VA was 1.49 logMAR (20/640) and improved by a mean 0.72 logMAR (95% CI, 0.54-0.89; range, -0.20 to 1.50) to 0.73 logMAR (20/100) at 6 months. Baseline HCVA was worse in younger participants (aged <10 years) with associated neurologic autoimmune diagnoses, white matter lesions, and in those of non-White race and non-Hispanic ethnicity. The data did not suggest a statistically significant association between baseline factors and improvement in HCVA.

Conclusions And Relevance: The study network did not reach its targeted enrollment of 100 pediatric patients with ON over 2 years. This indicates that future treatment trials may need to use different inclusion criteria or plan a longer enrollment period to account for the rarity of the disease. Despite poor VA at presentation, most children had marked improvement by 6 months. Associated neurologic autoimmune diagnoses were common. These findings can be used to counsel families about the disease.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1001/jamaophthalmol.2020.4231DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7563662PMC
December 2020

Dermatographism associated with ocrelizumab.

Mult Scler Relat Disord 2020 Nov 13;46:102505. Epub 2020 Sep 13.

Department of Neurosciences, University of California San Diego, San Diego, CA, United States. Electronic address:

Dermatographism is a disorder of unknown etiology that results in inducible hives from environmental stimuli. Here we report the first known case of dermatographism associated with ocrelizumab in a patient with relapsing remitting multiple sclerosis. The patient presented with pruritic linear raised rash approximately two weeks after her first infusion with ocrelizumab and was later diagnosed with dermatographism. This case highlights a potential rare adverse reaction to ocrelizumab and may provide insight into the biological underpinnings of dermatographism.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.msard.2020.102505DOI Listing
November 2020

Do Pregnancies Forestall the Onset of MS?

JAMA Neurol 2020 12;77(12):1484-1485

Department of Neurosciences, University of California, San Diego, La Jolla.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1001/jamaneurol.2020.3332DOI Listing
December 2020

Utilization of Visual Acuity Retroilluminated Charts for the Assessment of Afferent Visual System Dysfunction in a Pediatric Neuroimmunology Population.

J Neuroophthalmol 2021 03;41(1):19-23

Multiple Sclerosis Division (PVS, MM, DC, BMG), Department of Neurology and Neurotherapeutics, University of Texas Southwestern, Dallas, Texas; Department of Neurology (JG), University of California San Diego, San Diego, California; Department of Neurology and Pediatrics (LB), Boston Children's Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts; Division of Neurology (ATW), Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; and Departments of Neurology and Pediatrics (ATW), Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Background: Visual acuity has been a significant outcome measure in clinical trials for patients suffering from neuro-ophthalmological diseases and multiple sclerosis; however, there are limited data on the comparison of various testing strategies in pediatric patients with these disorders. Clinical trials using vision as an outcome could include a variety of tools to assess the acuity, including 2-m and 4-m standardized retroilluminated charts.

Methods: We investigated the difference in Early Treatment Diabetic Retinopathy Study (ETDRS) scores obtained using 2-m and 4-m charts, as well as the impact of optic neuritis, use of vision correction, age, and gender on visual acuity data from 71 patients with pediatric neuroimmunological conditions in a cross-sectional study.

Results: We determine that the ETDRS letter scores obtained using 4-m charts are on average 3.43 points less (P = 0.0034) when testing monocular ETDRS letter scores and on average 4.14 points less (P = 0.0008) when testing binocular ETDRS letter scores, relative to that obtained using the 2-m charts. However, we find that when performing monocular testing, optic neuritis in the eye being tested did not result in a statistically significant difference between 2-m and 4-m ETDRS letter scores.

Conclusions: Although visual acuity charts are formatted by the distance, there are significant differences in the number of letters correctly identified between 2-m and 4-m charts. Although the differences may not impact the clinical acuity, research protocols should consider these differences before collapsing data across disparate studies.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/WNO.0000000000001001DOI Listing
March 2021

Improved relapse recovery in paediatric compared to adult multiple sclerosis.

Brain 2020 09;143(9):2733-2741

Mayo Clinic Paediatric Multiple Sclerosis Center, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN, USA.

Incomplete relapse recovery contributes to disability accrual and earlier onset of secondary progressive multiple sclerosis. We sought to investigate the effect of age on relapse recovery. We identified patients with multiple sclerosis from two longitudinal prospective studies, with an Expanded Disability Status Scale (EDSS) score within 30 days after onset of an attack, and follow-up EDSS 6 months after attack. Adult patients with multiple sclerosis (n = 632) were identified from the Comprehensive Longitudinal Investigations in Multiple Sclerosis at Brigham study (CLIMB), and paediatric patients (n = 132) from the US Network of Paediatric Multiple Sclerosis Centers (NPMSC) registry. Change in EDSS was defined as the difference in EDSS between attack and follow-up. Change in EDSS at follow-up compared to baseline was significantly lower in children compared to adults (P = 0.001), as were several functional system scores. Stratification by decade at onset for change in EDSS versus age found for every 10 years of age, EDSS recovery is reduced by 0.15 points (P < 0.0001). A larger proportion of children versus adults demonstrated improvement in EDSS following an attack (P = 0.006). For every 10 years of age, odds of EDSS not improving increase by 1.33 times (P < 0.0001). Younger age is associated with improved recovery from relapses. Age-related mechanisms may provide novel therapeutic targets for disability accrual in multiple sclerosis.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/brain/awaa199DOI Listing
September 2020

Pediatric Multiple Sclerosis Severity Score in a large US cohort.

Neurology 2020 09 20;95(13):e1844-e1853. Epub 2020 Jul 20.

From Partners Pediatric Multiple Sclerosis Center (J.D.S., T.C.), Massachusetts General Hospital; Harvard Medical School (J.D.S.), Boston, MA; Pediatric Multiple Sclerosis and Related Disorders Program at Boston Children's Hospital (J.D.S., L.B., M.G.), MA; Children's Hospital Los Angeles (J.D.S.); Keck School of Medicine at the University of Southern California (J.D.S.), Los Angeles; Data Coordinating and Analysis Center (M.W., S.R., J.R., T.C.C.), University of Utah, Salt Lake City; Pediatric Multiple Sclerosis Center (G.A.), Loma Linda University Children's Hospital, CA; Pediatric MS Center at NYU Langone Health (A.B., L.K.), New York, NY; Washington University (M.S.G., S.M.), St. Louis, MO; Pediatric Multiple Sclerosis Center (J.S.G.), University of California San Diego; UAB Center for Pediatric-Onset Demyelinating Disease (Y.H., J.N.), University of Alabama at Birmingham; The Blue Bird Circle Clinic for Multiple Sclerosis (T.L.), Texas Children's Hospital, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston; Mellen Center for Multiple Sclerosis (M.M., M. Rensel), Cleveland Clinic, OH; Mayo Clinic Pediatric Multiple Sclerosis Center (M. Rodriguez, J.-M.T.), Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN; Rocky Mountain Multiple Sclerosis Center (T.S.), Children's Hospital Colorado, University of Colorado at Denver, Aurora; Pediatric Multiple Sclerosis Center (E.W.), University of California San Francisco; Jacobs Pediatric Multiple Sclerosis Center (B.W.-G.), State University of New York at Buffalo; and Department of Neurology (B.F.H.), Stanford University School of Medicine, Palo Alto, CA.

Objective: To characterize disease severity and distribution of disability in pediatric-onset multiple sclerosis (POMS) and to develop an optimized modeling scale for measuring disability, we performed a multicenter retrospective analysis of disability scores in 873 persons with POMS over time and compared this to previously published data in adults with multiple sclerosis (MS).

Methods: This was a retrospective analysis of prospectively collected data collected from 12 centers of the US Network of Pediatric MS Centers. Patients were stratified by the number of years from first symptoms of MS to Expanded Disability Status Scale (EDSS) assessment and an MS severity score (Pediatric Multiple Sclerosis Severity Score [Ped-MSSS]) was calculated per criteria developed by Roxburgh et al. in 2005.

Results: In total, 873 patients were evaluated. In our cohort, 52%, 19.4%, and 1.5% of all patients at any time point reached an EDSS of 2.0, 3.0, and 6.0. Comparison of our Ped-MSSS scores and previously published adult Multiple Sclerosis Severity Scores (MSSS) showed slower progression of Ped-MSSS with increasing gaps between higher EDSS score and years after diagnosis. Decile scores in our POMS cohort for EDSS of 2.0, 3.0, and 6.0 were 8.00/9.46/9.94, 7.86/9.39/9.91, and 7.32/9.01/9.86 at 2, 5, and 10 years, respectively. Notable predictors of disease progression in both EDSS and Ped-MSSS models were ever having a motor relapse and EDSS at year 1. Symbol Digit Modalities Test (SDMT) scores were inversely correlated with duration of disease activity and cerebral functional score.

Conclusions: Persons with POMS exhibit lower EDSS scores compared to persons with adult-onset MS. Use of a Ped-MSSS model may provide an alternative to EDSS scoring in clinical assessment of disease severity and disability accrual.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1212/WNL.0000000000010414DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7682820PMC
September 2020

Sex effects across the lifespan in women with multiple sclerosis.

Ther Adv Neurol Disord 2020 1;13:1756286420936166. Epub 2020 Jul 1.

Department of Neurology, St. Josef Hospital, Ruhr University Bochum, Bochum, Germany.

Multiple sclerosis (MS) is an autoimmune inflammatory demyelinating central nervous system disorder that is more common in women, with onset often during reproductive years. The female:male sex ratio of MS rose in several regions over the last century, suggesting a possible sex by environmental interaction increasing MS risk in women. Since many with MS are in their childbearing years, family planning, including contraceptive and disease-modifying therapy (DMT) counselling, are important aspects of MS care in women. While some DMTs are likely harmful to the developing fetus, others can be used shortly before or until pregnancy is confirmed. Overall, pregnancy decreases risk of MS relapses, whereas relapse risk may increase postpartum, although pregnancy does not appear to be harmful for long-term prognosis of MS. However, ovarian aging may contribute to disability progression in women with MS. Here, we review sex effects across the lifespan in women with MS, including the effect of sex on MS susceptibility, effects of pregnancy on MS disease activity, and management strategies around pregnancy, including risks associated with DMT use before and during pregnancy, and while breastfeeding. We also review reproductive aging and sexual dysfunction in women with MS.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/1756286420936166DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7331774PMC
July 2020

Real-World Effectiveness of Initial Disease-Modifying Therapies in Pediatric Multiple Sclerosis.

Ann Neurol 2020 07 14;88(1):42-55. Epub 2020 May 14.

UCSF Weill Institute for Neurosciences, Department of Neurology, University of California, San Francisco, San Francisco, CA.

Objective: To assess real-world effectiveness of initial treatment with newer compared to injectable disease-modifying therapies (DMTs) on disease activity in pediatric multiple sclerosis (MS) and clinically isolated syndrome (CIS).

Methods: This is a cohort study of children with MS/CIS followed at 12 clinics in the US Network of Pediatric MS Centers, who received initial therapy with newer (fingolimod, dimethyl fumarate, teriflunomide, natalizumab, rituximab, ocrelizumab) or injectable (interferon-β, glatiramer acetate) DMTs. Propensity scores (PSs) were computed, including preidentified confounders. Relapse rate while on initial DMT was modeled with negative binomial regression, adjusted for PS-quintile. Time to new/enlarging T2-hyperintense and gadolinium-enhancing lesions on brain magnetic resonance imaging were modeled with midpoint survival analyses, adjusted for PS-quintile.

Results: A total of 741 children began therapy before 18 years, 197 with newer and 544 with injectable DMTs. Those started on newer DMTs were older (15.2 vs injectable 14.4 years, p = 0.001) and less likely to have a monofocal presentation. In PS-quintile-adjusted analysis, those on newer DMTs had a lower relapse rate than those on injectables (rate ratio = 0.45, 95% confidence interval (CI) = 0.29-0.70, p < 0.001; rate difference = 0.27, 95% CI = 0.14-0.40, p = 0.004). One would need to treat with newer rather than injectable DMTs for 3.7 person-years to prevent 1 relapse. Those started on newer DMTs had a lower rate of new/enlarging T2 (hazard ratio [HR] = 0.51, 95% CI = 0.36-0.72, p < 0.001) and gadolinium-enhancing lesions (HR = 0.38, 95% CI = 0.23-0.63, p < 0.001) than those on injectables.

Interpretation: Initial treatment of pediatric MS/CIS with newer DMTs led to better disease activity control compared to injectables, supporting greater effectiveness of newer therapies. Long-term safety data for newer DMTs are required. ANN NEUROL 2020 ANN NEUROL 2020;88:42-55.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/ana.25737DOI Listing
July 2020

Novel MS vital sign: multi-sensor captures upper and lower limb dysfunction.

Ann Clin Transl Neurol 2020 03 26;7(3):288-295. Epub 2020 Feb 26.

Department of Neurology, UCSF Weill Institute for Neurosciences, University of California, San Francisco, California.

Objective: To create a novel neurological vital sign and reliably capture MS-related limb disability in less than 5 min.

Methods: Consecutive patients meeting the 2010 MS diagnostic criteria and healthy controls were offered enrollment. Participants completed finger and foot taps wearing the MYO-band© (accelerometer, gyroscope, and surface electromyogram sensors). Signal processing was performed to extract spatiotemporal features from raw sensor data. Intraclass correlation coefficients (ICC) assessed intertest reproducibility. Spearman correlation and multivariable regression methods compared extracted features to physician- and patient-reported disability outcomes. Partial least squares regression identified the most informative extracted textural features.

Results: Baseline data for 117 participants with MS (EDSS 1.0-7.0) and 30 healthy controls were analyzed. ICCs for final selected features ranged from 0.80 to 0.87. Time-based features distinguished cases from controls (P = 0.002). The most informative combination of extracted features from all three sensors strongly correlated with physician EDSS (finger taps r  = 0.77, P < 0.0001; foot taps r  = 0.82, P < 0.0001) and had equally strong associations with patient-reported outcomes (WHODAS, finger taps r  = 0.82, P < 0.0001; foot taps r  = 0.82, P < 0.0001). Associations remained with multivariable modeling adjusted for age and sex.

Conclusions: Extracted features from the multi-sensor demonstrate striking correlations with gold standard outcomes. Ideal for future generalizability, the assessments take only a few minutes, can be performed by nonclinical personnel, and wearing the band is nondisruptive to routine practice. This novel paradigm holds promise as a new neurological vital sign.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/acn3.50988DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7085995PMC
March 2020
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