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ECTRIMS 2023 | A spotlight on sex differences in neurological disorders

Rhonda Voskuhl, MD, University of California, Los Angeles, CA, delves into the significance of considering sex differences when studying and treating neurological diseases, emphasizing the varied impacts of diseases like multiple sclerosis (MS) and Alzheimer’s disease on males and females. Historically, many studies were primarily based on male subjects, ignoring the different physiological responses of females. Such gender-neutral approaches in clinical trials are suboptimal, and there’s a need for treatments optimized for each gender’s unique needs. A paper from the Journal of Experimental Medicine highlights the pronounced disability progression in male MS patients, underscoring the necessity for treatments tailored to gender-specific needs. Dr Voskuhl champions a more specialized approach, emphasizing that a “”one-size-fits-all”” methodology isn’t feasible, given the complex anatomical and genetic variances between genders and among different neurological pathways. This interview took place at the European Committee for Treatment and Research in Multiple Sclerosis (ECTRIMS) Congress 2023 in Milan, Italy.

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I am an inventor on patents own by the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) related to estriol treatment for neuroprotection licensed by CleopatraRX and for estrogen receptor beta ligand treatment for neuroprotection (unlicensed).