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Neurol Neuroimmunol Neuroinflamm ; 10(2)2023 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2252822


BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: Prospective, deeply phenotyped research cohorts monitoring individuals with chronic neurologic conditions, such as multiple sclerosis (MS), depend on continued participant engagement. The COVID-19 pandemic restricted in-clinic research activities, threatening this longitudinal engagement, but also forced adoption of televideo-enabled care. This offered a natural experiment in which to analyze key dimensions of remote research: (1) comparison of remote vs in-clinic visit costs from multiple perspectives and (2) comparison of the remote with in-clinic measures in cross-sectional and longitudinal disability evaluations. METHODS: Between March 2020 and December 2021, 207 MS cohort participants underwent hybrid in-clinic and virtual research visits; 96 contributed 100 "matched visits," that is, in-clinic (Neurostatus-Expanded Disability Status Scale [NS-EDSS]) and remote (televideo-enabled EDSS [tele-EDSS]; electronic patient-reported EDSS [ePR-EDSS]) evaluations. Clinical, demographic, and socioeconomic characteristics of participants were collected. RESULTS: The costs of remote visits were lower than in-clinic visits for research investigators (facilities, personnel, parking, participant compensation) but also for participants (travel, caregiver time) and carbon footprint (p < 0.05 for each). Median cohort EDSS was similar between the 3 modalities (NS-EDSS: 2, tele-EDSS: 1.5, ePR-EDSS: 2, range 0.6.5); the remote evaluations were each noninferior to the NS-EDSS within ±0.5 EDSS point (TOST for noninferiority, p < 0.01 for each). Furthermore, year to year, the % of participants with worsening/stable/improved EDSS scores was similar, whether each annual evaluation used NS-EDSS or whether it switched from NS-EDSS to tele-EDSS. DISCUSSION: Altogether, the current findings suggest that remote evaluations can reduce the costs of research participation for patients, while providing a reasonable evaluation of disability trajectory longitudinally. This could inform the design of remote research that is more inclusive of diverse participants.

COVID-19 , Multiple Sclerosis , Humans , Prospective Studies , Cross-Sectional Studies , Pandemics
Science ; 376(6590): eabi9591, 2022 04 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2088383


In this work, we find that CD8+ T cells expressing inhibitory killer cell immunoglobulin-like receptors (KIRs) are the human equivalent of Ly49+CD8+ regulatory T cells in mice and are increased in the blood and inflamed tissues of patients with a variety of autoimmune diseases. Moreover, these CD8+ T cells efficiently eliminated pathogenic gliadin-specific CD4+ T cells from the leukocytes of celiac disease patients in vitro. We also find elevated levels of KIR+CD8+ T cells, but not CD4+ regulatory T cells, in COVID-19 patients, correlating with disease severity and vasculitis. Selective ablation of Ly49+CD8+ T cells in virus-infected mice led to autoimmunity after infection. Our results indicate that in both species, these regulatory CD8+ T cells act specifically to suppress pathogenic T cells in autoimmune and infectious diseases.

Autoimmune Diseases , COVID-19 , Animals , CD8-Positive T-Lymphocytes , Humans , Mice , Receptors, KIR , T-Lymphocytes, Regulatory
Mult Scler ; 28(10): 1576-1590, 2022 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1997275


BACKGROUND: Ofatumumab is approved for the treatment of relapsing multiple sclerosis (RMS). Ongoing safety reporting is crucial to understand its long-term benefit-risk profile. OBJECTIVE: Report the safety and tolerability of ofatumumab in RMS after extended treatment up to 3.5 years. METHODS: Patients completing ASCLEPIOS I/II (phase 3), APLIOS, or APOLITOS (phase 2) trials could enter ALITHIOS, a phase 3b, open-label, long-term safety study. We analyzed cumulative data of continuous ofatumumab treatment and of patients newly switched from teriflunomide. RESULTS: The safety population had 1969 patients: 1292 continuously treated with ofatumumab (median time-at-risk 35.5 months, 3253 patient-years) and 677 newly switched (median time-at-risk 18.3 months, 986 patient-years). A total of 1650 patients (83.8%) had ⩾1 adverse events and 191 (9.7%) had ⩾1 serious adverse events. No opportunistic infections or progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy events were identified; the risk of malignancies was low. Mean serum immunoglobulin (Ig) G levels remained stable. Mean IgM levels decreased but remained above the lower limit of normal in most. Serious infection incidence was low; decreased Ig levels were not associated with serious infections. CONCLUSION: In patients with up to 3.5 years' exposure, ofatumumab was well tolerated, with no new safety risks identified. These findings, with its established effectiveness, support a favorable benefit-risk profile of ofatumumab in RMS.

Multiple Sclerosis, Relapsing-Remitting , Multiple Sclerosis , Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized/adverse effects , Humans , Multiple Sclerosis/drug therapy , Multiple Sclerosis, Relapsing-Remitting/drug therapy