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Clinical Trial: Pathological Basis of MRI Signal Changes in Multiple Sclerosis


Treatment mode of action: n/a
Number of Subjects: 120
Medication: n/a
Location: Alabama|Alaska|Arizona|Arkansas|California|Colorado|Connecticut|Delaware|District of Columbia|Florida|Georgia|Hawaii|Idaho|Illinois|Indiana|Iowa|Kansas|Kentucky|Louisiana|Maine|Maryland|Massachusetts|Michigan|Minnesota|Mississippi|Missouri|Montana|Nebraska|Nevada|New Hampshire|New Jersey|New Mexico|New York|North Carolina|North Dakota|Ohio|Oklahoma|Oregon|Pennsylvania|Rhode Island|South Carolina|South Dakota|Tennessee|Texas|Utah|Vermont|Virginia|Washington|West Virginia|Wisconsin|Wyoming
Institutions: NIH (Bethesda, Maryland) Contact Information
Joan Ohayon




Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a disease that damages the central nervous system (brain and spinal cord). This leads to increased physical disability over time. The disease is lifelong once it begins. Researchers want to learn more about the stages of multiple sclerosis and follow them until a person’s death. This research study involves multi-day visits to Bethesda, Maryland for up to 30 years or more, and participants agree to have an autopsy at the time of their death and to donate some of their organs, such as the brain and spinal cord, to research.

To understand how the physical and clinical signs of MS relate to its changes over time.

Adults age 18 or older with MS or a disease of the brain and spinal cord that may act like MS.

Participants will have a medical history and a complete neurological exam. They may have timed tests of neurological function, such as a 25-foot walk and a 9-hole peg test.

Participants will have multi-day visits about once a year, for 30 years or more. This is an outpatient study. However, participants who are frail or moderately to severely disabled, or who would be substantially inconvenienced by the need to return to the NIH for study procedures spread over several days, may be admitted to the hospital.

Participants will have blood drawn.

Participants may have a brain magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan. They may also have an MRI of the spinal cord. They may get a contrast agent (dye) injected into a tube in an arm vein. During the MRI, participants will lie on a table that slides in and out of a metal cylinder.

Participants will have the thickness of their retina measured using optical coherence tomography. A camera on top of a table uses lasers. Participants will look through a lens and follow instructions. Eye drops may be used to dilate the pupils.

Participants will chew on a piece of sterile cotton for 1 minute to collect saliva.

There is no cost for research related procedures or participation.

Compensation will not be provided for specific research procedures. Participants’ travel costs will be covered. In cases of need (e.g., disability), travel costs for a companion will also be provided.


© 2023 The National Multiple Sclerosis Society is a tax exempt 501(c)3 nonprofit organization. Its Identification Number (EIN) is 13-5661935.