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More MS news articles for March 2004

Study finds IFN-beta slows brain atrophy

http://www.bostoncure.org:8080/article.pl?sid=04/03/26/1257203&mode=nested

March 26th, 2004
Hollie
Boston Cure Project

An open-label study of interferon-beta 1b (Betaferon) showed a slowing of brain volume loss in participants over a three year period. After two years on therapy, yearly brain atrophy rates in the subjects dropped to levels close to those previously found in healthy control subjects. Contrast enhancing lesions and white matter lesion loads also decreased during the study period, although this effect was reduced in subjects who developed neutralizing antibodies.

One limitation of the study is that it was not placebo-controlled; rather, subjects' responses were compared to their experiences during a pre-treatment 6 month baseline period. The authors note, however, that several of their results are consistent with those from larger controlled studies.

One interesting feature of this study is that it involved obtaining monthly serial MRIs from each of the participants -- a total of 1,155 MRIs. Not much was said, however, about any month-to-month observations. Perhaps that will be covered in a future study?
 

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