First conference

Hot topics in
multiple sclerosis

First conference, November 2018

  • The latest research and clinical insights on the theme Progressive MS: is PPMS modifiable?
  • A ‘hot topic’ debate on the motion ‘We should routinely monitor cognition in standard MS clinical practice’


About this event

The first of our pioneering global conferences took place on 27 November 2018 and showcased the latest developments in progressive MS. It was titled Progressive MS: is PPMS modifiable? The launch of provided an exciting and diverse mix of presentations and engaging discussion on the ‘hot topic’ debate on the motion ‘We should routinely monitor cognition in standard MS clinical practice’. This truly global event brought together almost 400 delegates, enabling everyone to interact, network and share their thoughts. Participants may not have otherwise had the opportunity to do this without our unique platform! The conference was such a success, we realised we were at the beginning of a very exciting future and had created a truly inclusive event!


Scientific programme


Opening remarks

Gavin Giovannoni, UK

Progressive MS: is it modifiable?


Keynote presentation

When does progressive MS begin?

Shibeshih Belachew, Switzerland


Redefining secondary progressive MS: the case for metrics

Tomas Kalincik, Australia

Upper limb function as a primary outcome measure in progressive MS clinical trials

Maria Pia Sormani, Italy

The visual system as a window into the study of progressive MS

Ari Green, USA

Spinal cord imaging in progressive MS: current and future prospects

Carmen Tur, UK

Cerebrospinal fluid biomarkers in progressive MS trials

Sharmilee Gnanapavan, UK


Keynote presentation

The pathogenesis of progressive MS:making the case for one, two or three diseases?

Bruce Trapp, USA

Company-sponsored satellites


F. Hoffmann-La Roche
Is chronic inflammation present from the inception of MS? Insights from pathology and imaging

Assunta Dal-Bianco, Austria


Novartis Pharma AG
Looking at the opposite side of the disease continuum: Acting early – new evidence in the treatment of
paediatric-onset MS

Brenda Banwell, USA



Free time to explore exhibit hall

Hot topic debate: cognition in MS


Motion: ‘We should routinely monitor cognition in standard MS clinical practice’

Chair’s introduction and audience vote on the motion

Gavin Giovannoni

Keynote presentations

For: James Sumowski, USA
Against: Anneke Van Der Walt, Australia


For: Dawn Langdon, UK
Against: Jiwon Oh, Canada

Moderated discussion and Q&A


Final summing up and close


Thank you so much for all the thinking and awareness-raising you do for MS research; it is impressive and invaluable. Please do not stop.

Delegate feedback

Thank you. This meeting was eco-friendly and allowed me to get out of it what I needed.

Delegate feedback

It was a well balanced and comprehensive package in my view, between live and static assets

Delegate feedback