“We think these advanced measures gathered from MRI are going to give us better insight into what’s going on in progressive MS that will equate to what we had with new lesions in relapsing MS.”

MRIs have been revolutionary in the diagnosis and treatment of patients with multiple sclerosis. While the detection of new lesions in the brain can raise a red flag for future clinical relapse, the concordance between disease activity on MRI and clinical progression in progressive forms of MS is much weaker.

In an interview with NeurologyLive, Robert Fox, MD, a neurologist at the Mellen Center for Multiple Sclerosis at Cleveland Clinic, explained why the need for new imaging biomarkers is imperative for accurately understanding how MS progresses. He noted that measures of cortical atrophy, thalamic atrophy, and diffusion tensor imaging may provide a more accurate marker of treatment effect in patients with progressive MS.