Capabilities of Stem Cell Transplantation vs Other Relapsing MS Therapies: Tomas Kalincik, MD, PhD


The professor of neurology and biostatistician at University of Melbourne and Royal Melbourne Hospital spoke on stem cell transplantation in patients with MS and its effectiveness in comparison with other traditional approaches. [WATCH TIME: 2 minutes]

WATCH TIME: 2 minutes

“These days, we’re using HSCT [hematopoietic stem cell transplantation] with caution and have a high level of appreciation for the potential associated risk. We have learned more now about how precisely HSCT fits in the treatment protocol.”

An oral abstract by Tomas Kalincik, MD, PhD, and colleagues on the effectiveness of autologous hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (AHSCT) in comparison with other treatments such as fingolimod (Gilenya; Novartis), ocrelizumab (Ocrevus; Genentech) and natalizumab (Tysabri; Biogen) was presented at the 2022 European Committee for Treatment and Research in Multiple Sclerosis (ECTRIMS) Congress, held October 26-28, in Amsterdam, Netherlands. Patients with relapsing-remitting MS were recruited for the trial from 6 AHSCT MS centers and were also combined with data from the MSBase registry.

Kalincik, professor of neurology and biostatistician at University of Melbourne and Royal Melbourne Hospital, and colleagues observed in their findings that the AHSCT-treated patients (n = 120) experienced less relapses (annualized relapse rate mean, 0.20 [±SD, 0.43] versus 0.11 [±0.36]; risk of relapses: HR, 0.55; 95% CI, 0.37-0.91) in comparison with fingolimod-treated patients. In addition, both treatments had a higher chance of disability improvement (HR, 2.62; 95% CI, 1.46-4.72) and a similar risk of disability score worsening (HR, 0.49, 95% CI, 0.16-1.54).1

Interviewed recently with NeurologyLive®, Kalincik, spoke on the potential benefit of using AHSCT as a new therapy for patients with MS and the gaps that the treatment could possibly fill from previous therapies. He also mentioned some of the important considerations from the data presented at ECTRIMS to better inform the clinical community.

 1. Kalincik T, Sharman S, Roos I et al. Comparative effectiveness of autologous haematopoietic stem cell transplantation vs. fingolimod, ocrelizumab and natalizumab in relapsing-remitting MS. Presented at: 2022 ECTRIMS Congress; October 26-28; Amsterdam, Netherlands. Abstract 0019
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