Kessler Basis to check the consequences of ocrelizumab on cognitive fatigue in relapsing-remitting MS

On February 8, 2021, the Kessler Foundation announced its plan to conduct a study on the effects of ocrelizumab (Ocrevus®) on cognitive fatigue in patients with relapsing-remitting (RR) multiple sclerosis (MS).

The Kessler Foundation is a large, nonprofit organization that conducts rehabilitation research to improve cognition, mobility, and long-term outcomes in patients with neurological disabilities resulting from brain and spinal cord damage. Genetech supported the foundation’s new study on the effects of the disease-modifying agent ocrelizumab on cognitive fatigue in patients with RRMS. John DeLuca, PhD and senior vice president of research and education, will lead the study research team on this investigation.

The Kessler Foundation highlighted the significant influence of cognitive fatigue on the quality of life in this patient population. According to the foundation, “none of the available drugs or disease-modifying therapies for MS are indicated for treating cognitive fatigue.” The researchers previously identified a physiological marker of cognitive fatigue in MS. As a result, the researchers in the upcoming study hope to provide data to elucidate the effects of ocrelizumab on this marker in patients with RRMS.

This will be a 3-year study involving 3 groups of patients: those with MS initiating ocrelizumab therapy, those with MS initiating glatiramer acetate injections, and healthy control patients who were matched for age, education, and gender are. Study investigators will assess cognitive fatigue and brain activity in all patients at baseline, 6 months and 12 months after starting treatment.

According to Dr. DeLuca’s investigation of pharmacological therapies for cognitive fatigue is critical to the management of cognitive fatigue in MS patients. “Using our physiological marker in this rigorous study, we can determine the impact of ocrelizumab on cognitive fatigue in people with MS,” he concluded.


Kessler Foundation to Study the Effects of MS-Modifying Therapy on Cognitive Fatigue Press release. East Hanover, NJ: Kessler Foundation. February 8, 2021.


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