BrainHealth & ResearchSpeak: cognitive reserve predicts outcome

ECTRIMS highlight: reduced brain reserve predicts clinical outcomes #BrainHealth #ResearchSpeak #ECTRIMS2016

“I have been banging on about cognitive reserve being a buffer against ‘clinically apparent progressive disease’. The findings presented in the poster below supports this statement. Study participants were broken down into those who were high and low learners on the PASAT (paced auditory serial addition test) at baseline in t he fingolimod FREEDOMS trials. The PASAT is well know to be affected by a learning effect, i.e. the more you repeat and practice the test the better you do. We hypothesised that those participants who were poor learners at baseline would do worse because poor learning is a marker of reduced cognitive reserve. Surprise, surprise we were proved correct. MSers with a reduced ability to learn a new cognitive task did worse. The poorer outcome occurred in both the treated and placebo arms of the trials. The conclusions are pretty clear and support the early effective treatment paradigm.”

“The implications of this study’s findings are important and mean we have to work out ways to measure reserve capacity in the different neurological subsystems we area measuring in clinical trials and practice. This will allow us to prognosticate, enrich or balance trials for a particular subgroups of MSers. This may be particularly important when we plan our trial that focuses on protecting upper limb function in people with more advanced MS.”

CoI: multiple

About the author

Prof G

Professor of Neurology, Barts & The London. MS & Preventive Neurology thinker, blogger, runner, vegetable gardener, husband, father, cook and wine & food lover.


  • Some expert suggested: Using more longer a highly effective treatment, patient will be more stable. What is your opinion ProfG, mouseDoc?

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