Rick Rudick, MD: Progressing Collaborative, Evidence-Based MS Care


The vice president of Development Sciences for Biogen shared developments to come of the international MS PATHS collaboration.

Clinical research into multiple sclerosis (MS) therapies has recently boomed. With marketed drugs now available for both forms of MS and improving standards for safety and tolerability, clinicians can now begin to focus more on evidence-based practice.

But there are still gaps to fill in the medicine field. Rick Rudick, MD, vice president of Development Sciences for Biogen, has an eye towards strengthening the foundation of MS research.

While attending the 70th annual meeting of the American Academy of Neurology (AAN) in Los Angeles, CA, Rudick talked with MD Magazine about catching up neurology to current sciences — namely, progressing the state of quantitative, science-based, standardized medicine development.

“The neurology field has only very recently gotten treatments for neurologic disease, and in the clinical practice, we don’t have the science, the standardization, the quantitative metric,” Rudick said. “Biogen wants to lead to a more evidence based practice.”

Rudick also discussed the company’s presented research initiative to identify blood biomarkers of MS such as serum neurofilament light (NfL), as well as the most recent progress to come from the Multiple Sclerosis Partners Advancing Technology and Health Solutions (MS PATHS) collaboration.

The amalgamation of 10 leading MS centers in the US and Europe is currently working to leverage technology used in routine care to generate standardized, high-quality data, by which researchers could evaluate MS symptoms such as a cognitive change.

“One thing we’re really finding and are very surprised with is the cognitive impairment in MS is far more prevalent than expected,” Rudick said.

As a result, the project has led to an action plan with info to make cognitive testing available to all physicians with a new app, as well as efforts to improve cognitive measures in patients with MS.

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For more extensive coverage from the American Academy of Neurology Annual Meeting (AAN) and other neurology-focused meetings, visit MD Magazine’s sister site NeurologyLive.

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