Natalizumab stabilizes physical, cognitive, MRI, and OCT markers of disease activity: A prospective, non-randomized pilotstudy

Garrick D. Talmage, Oscar J.M. Coppes, Adil Javed, Jacqueline Bernard

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


Natalizumab is an effective therapy for multiple sclerosis (MS). Its effectiveness has been demonstrated in several clinical and imaging studies. The objective of this study was to further demonstrate the efficacy of natalizumab using a comprehensive battery of clinical and imaging markers in the same cohort of patients followed longitudinally, hence capturing the multi-faceted nature of the MS disease process. A prospective, open-label, pilot study of 20 MS patients treated with natalizumab was conducted. High resolution MRI, Symbol-Digit Modalities Test (SDMT), and Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT) scans were obtained at baseline, 48, and 96 weeks. 15 patients completed the study. Natalizumab treatment decreased Expanded Disability Status Scale score (EDSS) and no change in SDMT, Brain Parenchymal Fraction (BPF), or any of the OCT markers of retinal degeneration was observed. Thalamic and whole brain volume as assessed by Percentage Brain Volume Change (PBVC) showed continuous deterioration. Higher baseline T2 lesion load correlated with increased rate of PBVC at 96-weeks (r = 0.566, R2 = 0.320, p = 0.035) and thalamic volume loss (r = -0.586, R2 = 0.344, p = 0.027). Most patients, 93%, achieved no evidence of disease activity (NEDA) at 2 years, likely due to early disease duration and lower initial baseline lesion load. This study further demonstrates stabilization of clinical and imaging markers of disease activity during natalizumab treatment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere0173299
JournalPloS one
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2017

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • General Agricultural and Biological Sciences
  • General


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