The purpose of this study is to see if we can find a new way to test how certain Multiple
Sclerosis (MS) medications work in the body and to better understand how the medicines
change certain substances (cells) found in the immune (protective) system.
Blood test will be drawn by doing the following:
- Use a new method called the "Immuknow®" Test to see if this method will help to better
understand how MS medicines work.
- Measure certain levels of immune cells in a new way, to see if it this will help to
understand the body's response to MS medicines.
These methods will test those with MS who are not taking any MS medications, to help us
compare the results.
About 100 subjects will be enrolled in this study at the Partners Multiple Sclerosis Center
at Brigham and Women's Hospital. Biogen Idec, Inc. of Cambridge, MA, is paying for this
study to be done.
The primary objective of this study is to determine the effects of various therapies
(immunomodulatory as well as immunosuppressive) on ATP levels in CD4+ cells and to determine
whether the "ImmuKnow®" assay is an appropriate screening tool to assess the
immunocompetence of potential Tysabri patients.
Secondary objective is to correlate the expression of ATP in CD4+ cells with CD4+ cell
Tertiary objective is to examine the level of regulatory T-cells (CD4+ and CD25+) in MS
patients and its possible correlation to the therapy used, and how well a recently proposed
marker of regulatory T-cells, LAP, correlates with CD25 marker.
1. Patients must be taking 1 of the following medications for 3 months or more: Cytoxan,
Cellcept, Novantrone Betaseron, Rebif, Avonex or Copaxone.
2. Patients must be able to provide written informed consent.
1. Patients on combination of multiple medications.
2. Restricted treatment whereby no use in 50 days prior to enrollment visit is
permitted: systemic steroids.
3. With educational completion below 8th grade school equivalent or non-fluent in
4. Any other reason, in the opinion of both the Investigator and/or Sponsor, the patient
is determined not suitable for study participation.
Samia J Khoury, MD
Harvard Medical School, Brigham and Women's Hospital - Partners MS Center