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October 1983

Intrathecal Interferon as Treatment of Multiple Sclerosis: A Planned Multicenter Study

Author Affiliations

From the Dent Neurologic Institute and the Division of Neurobiology, Department of Physiology, State University of New York (Dr Jacobs) and Roswell Park Memorial Institute (Drs O'Malley and Freeman and Mr Reese), Buffalo.

Arch Neurol. 1983;40(11):683-686. doi:10.1001/archneur.1983.04050100023008

Previous research indicates that multiple sclerosis (MS) may be caused, at least in part, by a viral infection of the CNS.1,2 Interferon is a naturally occurring biologic product that has potent antiviral activities.3-17 It has been demonstrated (in animals and humans) that only a fraction of the total dose crosses the blood-brain barrier when interferon is administered systemically, but the substance can safely be administered intrathecally (IT).6,12,18-23 For these reasons, we conducted a preliminary randomized study assessing the effects of IT administered human-fibroblast interferon (interferon-β) in a small series of patients with MS. That study demonstrated a beneficial effect.24,25 A larger, multicenter, definitive study of the efficacy of IT administered interferon-β is now under design. The participating centers are the Dent Neurologic Institute (DNI), Buffalo, the Roswell Park Memorial Institute (RPMI), Buffalo, the University of Rochester (New York) Medical Center (URMC), and the Walter Reed Army

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