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Natalizumab Treatment for Relapsing Multiple Sclerosis Stabilises Normal-Appearing White Matter Microstructure: A One-Year Prospective Ultra-High-Field Quantitative Imaging Study

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submitted on 2023-12-11, 06:31 and posted on 2023-12-11, 10:11 authored by Radu Tanasescu, Olivier Mougin, I-Jun Chou, Ali Al-Radaideh, Oltita P. Jerca, Su-Yin Lim, Penny Gowland, Cris S. Constantinescu

Background

Natalizumab dramatically reduces relapses and MRI inflammatory activity (new lesions and enhancing lesions) in multiple sclerosis (MS). Chemical exchange saturation transfer (CEST) MRI can explore brain tissue in vivo with high resolution and sensitivity. We investigated if natalizumab can prevent microstructural tissue damage progression measured with MRI at ultra-high field (7 Tesla) over the first year of treatment.

Methods

In this one-year prospective longitudinal study, patients with active relapsing–remitting MS were assessed clinically and scanned at ultra-high-field MRI at the time of their first natalizumab infusion, at 6 and 12 months, with quantitative imaging aimed to detect microstructural changes in the normal-appearing white matter (NAWM), including sequences sensitive to magnetisation transfer (MT) effects from amide proton transfer (MTRAPT) and the nuclear Overhauser effect (MTRNOE).

Results

12 patients were recruited, and 10 patients completed the study. The difference in the T1 relaxation times at month 6 and month 12 of natalizumab treatment was not significant, suggesting the lack of accumulation of tissue damage, while improvements were seen in MTR (MTRAPT and MTRNOE measures) at month 12, suggesting a tissue repair effect. This paralleled the expected lack of clinical and radiological worsening of conventional MRI measures of disease activity (new lesions or gadolinium-enhancing lesions).

Conclusion

Natalizumab prevents microstructural brain damage and has effects suggesting an improved white matter microstructure measured at ultra-high field during the first year of treatment.

Other Information

Published in: Brain Sciences
License: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
See article on publisher's website: https://dx.doi.org/10.3390/brainsci13101464

History

Language

  • English

Publisher

MDPI

Publication Year

  • 2023

License statement

This Item is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

Institution affiliated with

  • University of Doha for Science and Technology
  • College of Health Sciences - UDST

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