Main Article Content
The treatments for multiple sclerosis (MS) have improved over the past 25 years, but now the main question for physicians is deciding who should receive treatment, for how long, and when to switch to other options. These decisions are typically based on treatment tolerance and a reasonable expectation of long-term efficacy. A significant unmet need is the lack of accurate laboratory measurements for diagnosis, and monitoring of treatment response, including deterioration and disease progression. There are few validated biomarkers for MS, and in practice, physicians employ two biomarkers discovered fifty years ago for MS diagnosis, often in combination with MRI scans. These biomarkers are intrathecal IgG and oligoclonal bands in the CSF (cerebrospinal fluid). Neurofilament light chain (NfL) is a relatively new biomarker for MS diagnosis and follow up. Neurofilaments are neuron-specific cytoskeleton proteins that can be measured in various body compartments. NfL is a new biomarker for MS that can be measured in serum samples, but this still needs further study to specify the laboratory cut-off values in clinical practice. In the present review we discuss the evidence for NfL as a reliable biomarker for the early detection and management of MS. Moreover, we highlight the correlation between MRI and NfL, and ask whether they can be combined.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
Authors who publish in this journal agree to the following terms:
- The authors keep the copyright and grant the journal the right of first publication under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution license, CC BY 4.0. This licencse permits unrestricted use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided that the original work is properly cited.
- The use of general descriptive names, trade names, trademarks, and so forth in this publication, even if not specifically identified, does not imply that these names are not protected by the relevant laws and regulations.
- Because the advice and information in this journal are believed to be true and accurate at the time of publication, neither the authors, the editors, nor the publisher accept any legal responsibility for any errors or omissions presented in the publication. The publisher makes no guarantee, express or implied, with respect to the material contained herein.
- The authors can enter into additional contracts for the non-exclusive distribution of the journal's published version by citing the initial publication in this journal (e.g. publishing in an institutional repository or in a book).