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CONy 2020 | Lessons to be learned from the laquinimod trial for MS

Gavin Giovannoni, MBBCh, PhD, FCP, FRCP, FRCPath, Blizard Institute, Barts and The London School of Medicine and Dentistry, Queen Mary University of London, London, UK, discusses the laquinimod clinical trial (NCT02284568). Despite negative results, crucial lessons can be learned from this clinical trial. Prof. Giovannoni believes that using whole brain volume was not the best measurement to access neuroprotection in this trial. The whole brain volume includes components other than neurons and axons, such as astrocytes and microglia. Therefore, in future clinical trials, the same mistakes should not be repeated and another biomarker should be used to assess neuroprotection. This interview took place during the Virtual World Congress on Controversies in Neurology (CONy) 2020.


Over the last 20 years, Professor Giovannoni has received personal compensation for participating on Advisory Boards in relation to multiple sclerosis clinical trial design, trial steering committees and data and safety monitoring committees from Abbvie, Actelion, Almirall, Atara Bio, Bayer-Schering Healthcare, Biogen, Bristol Myers Squibb, Canbex, Celgene, Eisai, Elan, Fiveprime, Genentech, GSK, GW Pharma, Ironwood, Janssen, Merck, Merck-Serono, Novartis, Pfizer, Roche, Sanofi-Genzyme, Synthon BV, Teva, UCB Pharma and Vertex Pharmaceuticals. Professor Giovannoni is Co-Editor-in-Chief of Multiple Sclerosis and Related Disorders and chairs the MS Brain Health initiative, MS Academy and conference. He has previously been a member of the multiple sclerosis and related disorders specialist advisory group of the Association of British Neurologists and an ECTRIMS representative. He is a director of Oxford Health Policy Forum, a nonprofit social enterprise.