The International Progressive MS Alliance has published a ‘white paper’ describing their innovative collaboration with Industry that is designed to drive a robust approach to developing new therapies for progressive forms of MS.
The paper published in the journal Trends in Pharmacological Sciences describes the ‘Industry Forum’ that was established from the outset of the Alliance. The Industry Forum is an advisory group to the Scientific Steering Committee of the Alliance. It is made up of industry representatives who have personal knowledge and expertise in the development of new therapies. This expertise, combined with a governance structure under the leadership of global MS advocacy organisations fosters collaboration while also ensuring a patient-centered approach to drug discovery and development.
The objective of the Industry Forum is to remove barriers and create an environment conducive to open discussions. The forum has helped to further develop the Alliance’s scientific strategy, in particular identifying that translational pathophysiology approaches and data sharing are key parts to a strategy that aims to overcome the barriers faced in progressive MS research.
Drug discovery for progressive MS has been hampered by an incomplete understanding of the biological mechanisms that drive progression. The Alliance, by working with industry, aims to focus attention back onto the neuroprotective and neuroreparative strategies that are needed to target the ongoing neurodegenerative processes of progressive MS.
Through this open, collaborative approach they aim to open new avenues for drug development and ‘de-risk’ industry investment in progressive MS research.