Author Of 2 Presentations
PS15.05 - Retinal neuro-axonal loss reflects disability accrual in progressive multiple sclerosis independently from disease activity
The visual pathway has emerged as an elective platform to study the interaction between demyelination and neurodegeneration in multiple sclerosis (MS)
We specifically assessed neural damage at this level in progressive MS (PMS), also exploring the evolution over time of functional (trough visual evoked potentials - VEPs) and structural (trough optical coherence tomography - OCT) parameters, as well as their relations with disease course and clinical disability.
We performed a prospective longitudinal study enrolling 350 PMS patients (228 secondary progressive MS - SPMS, 122 primary progressive MS - PPMS) who underwent a cross-sectional evaluation comprehensive of Expanded Disability Statur Scale (EDSS) assessment, high (HCVA)- and low-contrast (LCLA) visual acuity test, full-field (ff-VEPs) as well as multifocal (mf-VEPs) VEPs, and OCT. We performed a follow-up assessment (mean interval 2.0±0.9 years) in 147 patients (52 PPMS and 95 SPMS); a parallel collection of clinical records (including reports MRI scans, performed as per clinical practice) has been also obtained.
Independently from previous optic neuritis (ON), we found visual conduction to be slower among SPMS compared to PPMS patients, particularly for mf-VEPs: mean latency 168.9 ms (95% CI 166.2-171.1) vs 163.8 ms (95% CI 160.7-166.9) respectively, p=0.019. Retinal Nerve Fiber Layer (RNFL) was also found to be thinner among SPMS in comparison to PPMS patients: mean 83.4 μm (95% CI 81.4-85.4) vs 87.0 μm (95% CI 84.4-89.6), p=0.040, with similar results for Ganglion Cell-Inner Plexiform Layer (GCIPL). Considering the evolution over time of functional and structural parameters, we found no significant differences comparing PPMS and SPMS patients. Reclassifying our cohort according to EDSS status (“stable” vs “worsened”) we found a significant between-groups difference in terms of RNFL evolution: mean annualized percent change -0.163 %/year (95% CI -0.467 - -0.141) vs -0.854 %/year (95% CI -1.188 - -0.521) respectively, p=0.003. Similar findings were obtained for GCIPL change. In both cases, these observations were independent from the evidence of MRI activity during follow-up.
our results suggest the presence of a greater functional and structural involvement of the visual system among SPMS compared to PPMS patients, independently from previous ON history; follow-up data suggest however neurodegeneration accrual over time to be similar between these two clinical subgroups. The longitudinal relation between RNFL - GCIPL thinning and EDSS worsening, even in the absence of overt MRI activity and/or clinical relapses, suggests OCT to represent a useful tool to monitor disease progression and to assess neuroprotection in PMS.
YI02.05 - Cognition and socio-professional attainment in paediatric onset multiple sclerosis: a reappraisal after 10 years
- A. Bellinvia
- R. Fratangelo
- E. Portaccio
- M. Fonderico
- L. Tudisco
- L. Razzolini
- L. Pastò
- B. Goretti
- C. Niccolai
- A. Ghezzi
- M. Zaffaroni
- L. Pippolo
- L. Moiola
- M. Falautano
- C. Celico
- R. Viterbo
- F. Patti
- C. Chisari
- P. Gallo
- A. Riccardi
- M. Borghi
- M. Simone
- A. Bertolotto
- C. Pozzilli
- V. Bianchi
- M. Roscio
- V. Martinelli
- G. Comi
- M. Filippi
- M. Trojano
- M. Amato
Cognitive impairment (CI) affects nearly 30% of paediatric patients with Multiple Sclerosis (MS) and has a negative impact on school performance and participation in social activities. This study is a re-appraisal of cognitive functioning and socio-professional attainment in adulthood in an Italian cohort of paediatric MS patients after 10 years from baseline neuropsychological assessment.
To re-assess cognitive performance and its impact on socio-professional attainment in our cohort of paediatric MS patients after 10 years from baseline evaluation and to determine predictors of the individual outcomes.
Sixty-three paediatric patients were assessed at baseline and 48 followed-up after five years. To date, 31 out of these 48 patients (17 females, mean age 27.9±2.5 years, mean EDSS 1.7±1.6) were reassessed on an extensive neuropsychological battery and compared with a matched group of 31 healthy controls. CI was defined as the failure of > 2 tests. Socio-professional attainment was evaluated on the Work and Social Assessment Scale (WSAS). Predictors of CI and WSAS score were assessed through multivariable logistic and linear models.
After a mean follow-up of 12.5±2.3 years, 15 (54%) subjects were classified as cognitively impaired. Patients with CI compared with those cognitively preserved at follow-up had higher Expanded Disability Status Scale (EDSS) score (1.9±1.4 vs 1.0±0.7; p = 0.046), lower baseline intelligence quotient (IQ) (86.2±23.8 vs 103.6±14.7; p = 0.025) and were less frequently treated with disease modifying therapy (DMT) at baseline [6 (35.3%) vs 11 (78.6%); p = 0.016]. In the regression model, CI after 10 years was related to lower IQ (OR 0.93, 95% CI 0.87-0.99, p = 0. 027) and absence of DMT at baseline assessment (OR 17.78 95%; 1.72-183.65, p = 0.017).
Baseline predictors of worse socio-professional attainment on the WSAS in adulthood were CI (B=6.3, p=0.016), higher EDSS (B=2.2, p=0.023) and higher age at onset (B=0.6, p=0.041). As for 10-year correlates, only CI was associated to poor functional outcome (B=5.2, p=0.006).
Complete data collection is ongoing; available findings to date show that in paediatric onset subjects CI remains significant in adulthood, is related to lower cognitive reserve, higher levels of neurological impairment and delay in DMT initiation. Moreover, CI plays a key role in predicting the subject social performance and professional outcome. Early treatment and promotion of strategies aimed at enhancing cognitive reserve are recommended in paediatric patients with MS.
Author Of 7 Presentations
P0031 - Asymptomatic anterior optic pathway involvement in early multiple sclerosis and clinically isolated syndromes (ID 1838)
Optical coherence tomography is gaining increasing relevance in the assessment of people with multiple sclerosis. Converging evidence point to the view that neuro-retinal changes, in eyes without acute optic neuritis, reflect inflammatory and neurodegenerative processes taking place throughout the CNS.
The present study aims at exploring the usefulness of optical coherence tomography as a marker of inflammation and disease burden in the earliest phases of the disease.
a cohort of 150 consecutive patients underwent clinical, neurophysiological and brain MRI assessment as well as lumbar puncture as part of their diagnostic workup for a neurological episode suggestive of inflammatory CNS disorder. For the present study, patients also received a visual pathway assessment - including OCT, VEP, visual acuity testing –, measurement of CSF inflammatory markers – a set of 17 cytokines-chemokines and, count of extracellular vesicles of myeloid origin –, and dosage of serum neurofilaments.
19.2% of clinically isolated syndromes had abnormal visual evoked potentials in eyes without optic neuritis. Similarly, optical coherence tomography identified neuro-retinal thinning in 17.8% of patients without prior visual symptoms. The presence of asymptomatic involvement of the anterior optic pathway tested with either techniques was associated with a greater disease burden.
A thinner ganglion cell layer in eyes without prior optic neuritis or instrumental evidences of it was correlated with higher EDSS, lower low contrast visual acuity, longer disease duration, higher brain lesion load, presence of gadolinium enhancing lesions, more severe abnormalities along motor and somatosensory evoked potentials, and higher frequency of CSF-specific oligoclonal bands.
We also found that inner nuclear layer thickens in a post-acute (1.1 – 3.7 months) phase after a relapse, particularly in those who did not receive steroid treatment. Likewise, a longitudinal analysis on 65 patients, showed that this swelling is transient and returns to normal values after one year of follow-up. Notwithstanding, the clinical, MRI, serological and CSF markers of disease activity considered in the study were strictly associated with one-another but none of them was associated with inner nuclear layer volume.
The present findings suggest that instrumental evidence of asymptomatic optic nerve involvement is associated with a greater disease burden in early MS and clinically isolated syndrome. Neuro-retinal changes are present since the earliest phases of the disease and yield important information regarding the neurodegenerative and inflammatory processes occurring in the CNS.
P0247 - Comparison of the 2017 and 2010 revisions of the McDonald criteria in patients with cis suggestive of MS: a multicentre MAGNIMS study (ID 1121)
- P. Preziosa
- A. Meani
- A. Rovira
- S. Mesaros
- O. Ciccarelli
- J. Frederiksen
- C. Enzinger
- F. Barkhof
- C. Gasperini
- E. Fainardi
- W. Brownlee
- J. Drulovic
- X. Montalban
- S. Cramer
- M. Kalil
- M. Hagens
- S. Ruggieri
- G. Dalla Costa
- V. Martinelli
- K. Miszkiel
- M. Tintore
- G. Comi
- I. Dekker
- B. Uitdehaag
- J. Ivanović
- M. Amato
- M. Rocca
In 2017, a revision of the 2010 McDonald criteria for multiple sclerosis (MS) diagnosis in clinically isolated syndrome (CIS) patients has been proposed. However, its validation in a large multicenter cohort of CIS patients is still needed.
To compare the performance of 2017 and 2010 revisions of the McDonald criteria with respect to MS development in a large multicentric cohort of CIS suggestive of MS.
Brain and spinal cord magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) examination obtained ≤5 months from CIS onset and a follow-up brain MRI acquired ≤15 months from CIS onset were assessed in 626 CIS patients from 9 European MS centres. The occurrence of a second clinical attack (clinically definite [CD] MS) was recorded. Performances of the 2017 and 2010 revisions of McDonald criteria for dissemination in space (DIS), time (DIT) and DIS plus DIT, also including OCB assessment, were evaluated with a time-dependent receiver operating characteristic curve analysis. Median time to MS diagnosis for the different sets of criteria was estimated through Kaplan-Meier curves.
At the last evaluation (median=61.9 months [IQR=39.1-102.5]), 319 (51%) of 626 patients had CDMS. At 36 months, for DIS, the 2017 MRI criteria had higher sensitivity (0.84 [95% CI=0.79-0.88] vs 0.77 [0.72-0.82]), lower specificity (0.33 [0.28-0.39] vs 0.40 [0.35-0.46]), and similar area under the curve values (AUC, 0.59 [0.55-0.62] for both). The 2017 DIS plus DIT MRI criteria had higher sensitivity (0.68 [0.63-0.74] vs 0.62 [0.56-0.68]), lower specificity (0.55 [0.49-0.61] vs 0.62 [0.56-0.68]), and similar AUC values (0.62 [0.58-0.66] for both). CSF-specific OCB assessment as part of the 2017 criteria revision, increased the sensitivity (0.81 [0.75-0.85]), decreased specificity (0.40 [0.34-0.46]) and preserved AUC values (0.60 [0.56-0.64]). Median time to MS diagnosis was earlier with the 2017 revision compared to the 2010 or CDMS criteria, especially with OCB assessment (2017 revision with OCBs=3.6 months [3.1-4.0], 2017 revision without OCB=11.6 months [7.8-13.5], 2010 revision=13.9 months [12.4-15.3], CDMS=56.3 months [43.8-76.0]).
The 2017 revision of the McDonald criteria showed overall similar accuracy to the 2010 McDonald criteria in predicting CDMS development. The suggested modifications are expected to simplify the clinical use of MRI criteria without reducing accuracy and allow an earlier diagnosis of MS.
P0261 - Paramagnetic rim lesions are specific to multiple sclerosis: an international multicenter 3T MRI study (ID 1025)
In multiple sclerosis (MS), a subset of chronic active white matter lesions are identifiable on MRI by their paramagnetic rims, and increasing evidence supports their association with clinical disease severity.
To assess the prevalence and MS-specificity of paramagnetic rim lesions (PRL) on 3-tesla susceptibility-based MR brain images in MS vs non-MS cases in a multicenter sample drawn from 5 academic research hospitals at sites in Europe (Brussels, Lausanne, Milan) and the United States (NIH and JHU).
On submillimetric 3D T2*-segmented EPI brain MRI, the presence of PRL and central vein sign (CVS) were evaluated in the supratentorial brain of adults with MS (n=329) and non-MS neurological conditions (n=83). Non-MS cases were grouped as follows: (1) other-inflammatory neurological diseases (n=41); (2) HTLV-associated myelopathy/tropical spastic paraparesis (HAM/TSP; n=10); (3) HIV-infected (n=10); (4) non-inflammatory neurological diseases (n=22).
ROC curve analysis, with diagnosis as dependent variable (MS vs non-MS), was applied to examine the diagnostic accuracy for each biomarker (PRL and CVS). Youden’s index method was used to obtain the optimal cutoff value for each biomarker.
PRL were detected in 172/329 (52%) of MS cases vs. 6/83 non-MS cases (7%).
In MS, 58% of progressive cases had at least one PRL, compared to 50% of relapsing cases. MS cases with more than 4 PRL were more likely to have higher disability scores (EDSS, MSSS and ARMSS), but not significantly longer disease duration or older age.
In non-MS cases, PRL were seen exclusively in only a few inflammatory/infectious neurological conditions, including Susac syndrome (3 cases), neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorder (1 case), Sjögren disease (1 case) and HAM/TSP (1 case). Unlike in MS, PRL in non-MS cases were not associated with a high frequency of CVS+ lesions.
The identification of at least one PRL (optimal cutoff) was associated with high diagnostic specificity (93%), but relatively low sensitivity (52%) and accuracy (area under ROC curve=0.77), whereas CVS detection alone (optimal cutoff 35.5-38%) could better discriminate MS from non-MS cases with high specificity (96%), sensitivity (99%), and accuracy (area under ROC curve=0.99). The combination of the two biomarkers further improved the specificity (99%), but sensitivity remained low (59%).
PRL yielded high specificity for MS lesions. Future prospective multicenter studies should further validate its role as a diagnostic biomarker.
P0683 - Altered resting state dynamic functional connectivity of precuneus contributes to cognition and depression in neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorders (ID 887)
In neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorders (NMOSD), cognitive impairment (CI) is nowadays considered as a unique relapse-unrelated manifestation of the disease. As a proof-of-concept, anti-aquaporin4 (AQP4)-IgG seems to inhibit neuronal plasticity and long-term potentiation. Structural and functional MRI (fMRI) studies have disclosed an association with damage of the precuneus (PCUN) and cognitive impairment (CI) in several neurological conditions.
To explore the role of dynamic functional connectivity (dFC) of the PCUN at resting state (RS) to explain cognitive alterations in NMOSD patients.
3.0 T RS fMRI were acquired from 27 AQP4-positive NMOSD patients and 30 age- and sex-matched healthy controls (HC). Patients underwent an extensive neuropsychological evaluation including the assessment of global and domain-specific cognitive impairment index (CII) and Beck Depression Inventory II (BDI-II) scores. DFC of the left (L) and right (R) PCUN was assessed by means of sliding-window seed-voxel correlation analysis. Standard deviation of dFC across windows was used as a measure of dynamicity (the higher the better). Age- and sex-adjusted between-group dFC comparisons and correlations with cognitive scores were assessed using SPM12 and full-factorial models. A p value <0.001 was considered statistically significant.
Compared to HC, NMOSD patients had reduced L-PCUN dFC with caudate nucleus, rectus, olfactory bulb and occipital inferior gyrus and increased dFC between the L-PCUN and the middle temporal gyrus and between the R-PCUN the middle occipital gyrus. Global CII positively correlated with higher L-intra-PCUN dFC, as well as with higher dFC between the L-PCUN and the middle temporal and middle frontal gyrus and between the R-PCUN and the middle cingulate gyrus. Impairment of information processing speed (IPS, 59.2%) and depression (63.0%) were the most common cognitive alterations. The IPS index positively correlated with a higher L-intra-PCUN-dFC, and a higher dFC between the R-PCUN and the middle cingulate gyrus. The BDI-II score positively correlated with a higher dFC between the R-PCUN and the middle frontal gyrus.
The assessment of PCUN dFC supports the role of PCUN in NMOSD cognitive dysfunction. We observed a protective effect of higher dynamic connections with limbic regions for cognitive performance, while those with the frontal lobe were detrimental for depressive symptoms.
P0852 - Clinical activity after fingolimod treatment in naïve RRMS patients compared to patients previously treated with other drugs (ID 1304)
Fingolimod is a highly effective drug, with a significant proportion of subjects showing no evidence of disease activity (NEDA) at 2-years follow-up. However, it is not known whether the previous treatment history may influence clinical outcomes under fingolimod.
To assess NEDA status in a Italian cohort of relapsing remitting (RR) MS patients treated with fingolimod (FTY), comparing naïve patients with patients previously treated with first-line and second-line drugs.
543 RRMS patients, who started fingolimod treatment at San Raffaele Hospital (Milan) between 2011 and 2018 were enrolled in the study. Patients were divided in three categories, according to the previous treatment: naïve patients (group 1, n=74), patients previously treated with first-line drugs (group 2, n=315) and patients previously treated with second-line and immunosuppressive drugs (group 3, n=146). NEDA status was assessed at two-year follow-up. Baseline characteristics were investigated in association with NEDA status, using logistic regression in univariable and multivariable models.
Overall, 45.6% patients were NEDA (n=227) at 2-year follow-up; specifically 62.1% patients belonging to group 1, 47.4% to group 2 and 33.6% to group 3 respectively. In the multivariable analysis we observed that patients treated with a first-line and second-line therapy had an increased risk of being EDA (OR=2.2, p=0.036 and OR=3.9, p<0.001 respectively) compared to naïve patients. Moreover, a higher number of new/active MRI lesions (OR, 1.2, p=0.004), a higher annualized relapse rate in the 2 years before (OR=1.3, p=0.03) and a younger age (OR=0.97, p=0.01) at onset were independently associated with increased risk of being EDA.
We confirmed FTY effectiveness in a large monocentric cohort of Italian RRMS patients. Moreover, patients treated with FTY as first drug had a higher probability of being NEDA after 2 years compared to patients previously treated with second-line but also first-line drugs. These data suggest an early use of FTY in naïve patients with high inflammatory activity, considering the better clinical outcomes observed at short-term follow-up.
P0982 - MR T2-relaxation time as an indirect measure of brain water accumulation in Neuromyelitis Optica Spectrum Disorders (ID 1077)
One of the main unsolved issues in the clinical management of neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorders (NMOSD) is the lack of biomarkers predicting short-term relapses. In physiological conditions, the blood brain barrier (BBB) protects the CNS from water unbalance, with aquaporin-4 (AQP4) water channels on astrocytes podocytes being the main regulator of water influx and efflux. In NMOSD, BBB integrity might be threatened by the presence of antibodies targeting AQP4 water channels and triggering complement-mediated astrocytes damage. In line with this, increased T2-signal in acute lesions (“bright spotty lesions”) is considered specific for NMOSD. However, it remains unexplored whether these patients present a chronic water unbalance.
To provide an indirect estimation of brain water content in NMOSD by measuring T2-relaxation time (T2rt) and to assess whether it differs in patients having a short-term relapse.
In this multicenter MR study, T2rt was calculated from brain dual echo turbo spin echo images assuming a mono exponential decay. T2rt maps of normal appearing white matter (NAWM), gray matter (GM) and basal ganglia were obtained from 77 AQP4-positive NMOSD and 84 HC. Short-term relapses were defined as those occurring within one month before or after MRI scan. Differences between NMOSD and HC were assessed with age-, sex- and site-adjusted linear models. ROC analyses were run to identify discriminators between stable and short-term relapsing patients.
NMOSD patients and HC had similar ages. Compared to HC, T2rt was increased in the GM (103 vs 97 ms), NAWM (88 vs 84 ms) and putamen (75 vs 72 ms) of NMOSD patients (p<0.001 for all). Short-term relapses occurred in 20/77 (26%) of patients. According to ROC analysis, T2rt cut-offs of 87 ms in the NAWM, 87 ms in the thalamus and 88 ms in the caudatus were able to discriminate between short-term relapsing and stable patients with good accuracy (AUC=0.70, 0.76 and 0.79 respectively, p≤ 0.027).
NMOSD patients had increased T2rt values, in line with the hypothesis of subclinical water accumulation in this disorder. The burden of T2rt alterations might be useful for identifying those patients with incipient or recent relapses.
P1075 - Early clinical and MRI predictors of long-term disability in pediatric multiple sclerosis patients (ID 1187)
The main clinical and MRI features driving therapeutic choices are not as clear for pediatric multiple sclerosis (MS) patients as for adults.
We aimed at assessing early predictors of long-term clinically-relevant outcomes in a large cohort of pediatric MS patients.
Clinical and MRI assessment was obtained at disease onset and after 1, 2 and 3 years, in a cohort of 123 pediatric MS patients. The longest clinical follow-up (mean 9.33 +/- 3.45 years) was considered for long-term outcomes. Cox proportional hazards models were used to assess predictors of time to first relapse, while multivariable logistic and linear regression models identified clinical and MRI predictors of long-term outcomes.
Across baseline features, optic nerve involvement predicted a shorter time to first relapse (hazard ratio=1.9, p=0.03). Predictors of annualized relapse rate (ARR) were: at baseline, presence of cerebellar (b=-0.16, p=0.00) and number of cervical cord lesions (b=0.14, p=0.01); considering short-term predictors, the same baseline variables together with time to first relapse (2-year: b=-0.12, p=0.01; 3-year: b=-0.08, p=0.00) and the number of relapses (1-year: b=0.14, p=0.00; 2-year: b=0.06, p=0.02). Baseline predictors of 10-year disability worsening were: at baseline, presence of optic nerve [odds ratio(OR)=6.45, p=0.01] and brainstem lesions (OR=6.17, p=0.04); considering short-term predictors, Expanded Disability Status Scale (EDSS) changes at 1 (OR=26.05, p=0.00) and 2 (OR= 16.38, p=0.02) years and the detection of at least two new T2-lesions in 2 years (2-year: OR=4.91, p=0.02; 3-year: OR=5.49, p=0.09). Predictors of higher 10-year EDSS score were: at baseline, EDSS score (b=0.58, p<0.001), presence of brainstem (b=0.31, p=0.04) and number of cervical cord lesions (b=0.22, p=0.05); considering short-term predictors, EDSS changes (1-year: b=0.82, p<0.001; 2-year: b=0.79, p<0.001, 3-year: b=0.27, p=0.04 ), together with the detection of at least two new T2-lesions at 1 (b=0.28, p=0.03) and 2 (b=0.35, p=0.01) years.
In conclusion, baseline spinal cord, brainstem and optic nerve lesions have a major role in predicting long-term outcomes, both in term of disease activity and of disability worsening. In addition, an accurate clinical and MRI monitoring during the first 2 years of disease has proven to represent a powerful tool for counseling patients about long-term prognosis and personalizing treatment strategies.