The founder and chief executive officer of Joi Life Wellness Group Multiple Sclerosis Center provided insight on the barriers with expanding precision medicine and the need for additional biomarkers of clinical progression. [WATCH TIME: 3 minutes]
WATCH TIME: 3 minutes
"The limiting factor is that we haven’t had the biomarkers to look at. We have a physical exam, an MRI, and the EDSS (Expanded Disability Status Scale) primarily for research studies, but most people don’t use it in clinical practice. The question is always, is there something we can do to try to curb or catch inflammation before it manifests as a physical symptom."
Multiple sclerosis (MS) is the most common autoimmune disease of the central nervous system, affecting more than 900,000 people in the US and more than 2 million people worldwide. Alterations in the peripheral immune system, blood brain barrier permeability, and intrinsic CNS immune cells contribute to MS pathogenesis. There are several different types of disease-modifying therapies (DMTs) available for relapsing forms of the MS, including sphingosine-1-phosphate receptor modulators, fumarates, infusion and injectable DMTs, and B-cell depleting agents, among others.
As more therapeutic approaches enter the fold, the conversations surrounding precision medicine and personalized treatment continue to grow. At MSMilan 2023, the 9th Joint ECTRIMS-ACTRIMS Meeting, held October 11-13, in Milan, Italy, expert Mitzi Joi Williams, MD, presented on the execution of precision medicine and the lessons learned through real-world clinical experience. In the presentation, Williams talked specifically about Octave Biosciences’ MS disease activity test, an assessment that evaluates the levels of 18 proteins in the blood and uses artificial intelligence algorithms to measure the level of new disease activity.
Williams, founder and chief executive officer of Joi Life Wellness Group Multiple Sclerosis Center, sat down with NeurologyLive® at the meeting to discuss the progress of precision medicine and the steps the clinical community still needs to take. She spoke on the importance of furthering the biomarker panel for MS, and how it will open the door for even more personalized treatment decisions.