Multiple Sclerosis Resource Centre

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GMSI Award 2016 – Award Winner Rayaz Malik, Ioannis Petropoulos and colleagues

Rayaz Malik

This lecture was given at the Grant for Multiple Sclerosis Innovation Awards Event on September 15, 2016 in London. The GMSI award is sponsored by Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany.

Corneal confocal microscopy (CCM) in MS; a three minute, non-invasive imaging technique for detecting disease. Axonal loss contributes to neurological deficits in peripheral neuropathies, stroke, Parkinson’s disease, ALS and MS. In this project, CCM will be used to image sensory nerves on the front of the eye to generate live images of the cornea. Prof Malik and Dr Petropoulous initially used the technique in 2003 in diabetic neuropathy to quantify corneal nerve fiber density, overall nerve fiber length and fiber branch density, which together can be used to track nerve degeneration and regeneration. Pilot data using MRI, OCT and CCM was collected from 25 relapsing-remitting MS patients. This patient population showed a significant reduction in all three parameters. The new study will involve observing several MS populations versus healthy controls over 24 months. They will address if corneal nerve loss relates to disability and if it is a better measure than the current standards of OCT and MRI.

Professor Rayaz Malik and Dr Ioannis Petropoulous, Qatar Foundation, Doha, Qatar