This study is promising.
Eur J Clin Invest. 2005 Aug;35(8):523-30.
Immunoadsorption patients with multiple sclerosis: an open-label pilot study.
Moldenhauer A, Haas J, Wascher C, Derfuss T, Hoffmann KT, Kiesewetter H, Salama A. -- Charite--Universitatsmedizin Berlin, Germany. email@example.com
BACKGROUND: Immunoadsorption (IA) is occasionally applied in patients with acute relapses of multiple sclerosis (MS). This pilot study was undertaken to determine whether IA might help in secondary progressive and relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis.
DESIGN: IA was performed at 1-week intervals in 12 patients with secondary progressive or relapsing-remitting MS. These patients had an extended disability status scale (EDSS) score of 4.5-7 and an EDSS increase of 0.5 within 6 months before inclusion in the study despite conventional drug therapy. The change in the EDSS and that in the MS functional composite (MSFC) score, which consisted of quantitative tests of arm function, ambulation, visual acuity and cognition, served as the primary outcome variables, which were measured at baseline and at 3, 6 and 12 months. Changes in quality of life and cerebral lesions by magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) were also assessed at baseline and after the last immunoadsorption (month 3).
RESULTS: A significant reduction of the median EDSS change was observed after the treatment period, which reversed 3 months after the immunoadsorptions had been stopped. Ten of 12 patients remained stable during the first year of follow-up with no significant changes of the MSFC scores. No significant changes in magnetic resonance imaging T2-hyperintense brain lesions or in the number of gadolinium-positive lesions and in the patients' quality of life were observed. Western blot analyses demonstrated a reduction of serum myelin-specific antibodies, which were collected in the adsorber eluates.
CONCLUSIONS: Removal of immunoglobulins, including myelin-specific antibodies by immunoadsorption, seems to delay disease progression as defined by EDSS, MSFC and MRI, while the patients' quality of life did not deteriorate.
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