Thursday, February 1, 2018

12:15pm - 1:45pm NAIMS Symposium
2:00pm - 2:10pm Opening Address
Jack Antel, McGill University
2:10pm - 3:40pm SESSION 1 - Emerging Concepts in MS
Chairs: Michael Levin, University of Saskatchewan; Tara DeSilva, Lerner Research Institute

Theme: Highlighting cutting edge studies that inform our understanding of the pathogenic mechanisms in MS, introduce novel measures to capture disease activity, and advance treatment options for affected individuals. This session will be comprised of platform presentations by young investigators selected from submitted abstracts (there will be six 15-min. talks, each consisting of 10-min. presentation and 5-min. Q&A)
2:10pm - 2:25pm Young Investigator 1 Platform Presentation
2:25pm - 2:40pm Young Investigator 2 Platform Presentation
2:40pm - 2:55pm Young Investigator 3 Platform Presentation
2:55pm - 3:10pm Young Investigator 4 Platform Presentation
3:10pm - 3:25pm Young Investigator 5 Platform Presentation
3:25pm - 3:40pm Young Investigator 6 Platform Presentation
3:45pm - 4:15pm BREAK
4:15pm - 5:15pm Kenneth P. Johnson Memorial Lecture
Suhayl Dhib-Jalbut, Rutgers University
5:15pm - 6:00pm NMSS Barancik Award Presentation and Talk
6:00pm - 8:00pm Poster Session 1 / Opening Reception

Friday, February 2, 2018

All Forum sessions strive to include one or more of these disciplines:

Clinical studies and trials
7:00am - 8:15am IMSVISUAL Symposium
8:30am-11:15am SESSION 2 - The Blood-Brain Barrier
Chairs: Joel Pachter, U Conn; Dritan Agalliu, Columbia

Theme: Blood-brain barrier (BBB) breakdown is an early event in the formation of MS lesions. This session will provide a review of BBB physiology and how it is interrupted during MS. The mechanism of current disease modifying therapies that affect the BBB will be examined. Novel adhesion molecules, that may be targeted in the future, will be discussed.
8:30am - 8:40am Opening Comments by Session Chairs
8:40am - 9:05am Introduction to the Anatomy and Physiology of the BBB
Britta Engelhardt, University of Bern
9:05am - 9:30am Dynamic Changes to the BBB During MS: Lessons from Imaging
Daniel Reich, National Institutes of Health
9:30am - 10:00am BREAK
10:00am - 10:25am Effects of Current Disease Modifying Therapies on the BBB: Insights into Mechanism of Action
Olaf Stuve, UT-Southwestern
10:25am - 10:50am Novel Adhesion Molecule Targets in MS
Alex Prat, University of Montreal
10:50am - 11:15am Panel Discussion
11:30am - 1:00pm Poster Session 2 / Lunch
1:00pm - 3:45pm SESSION 3 - Lymphocytes
Chairs: Mike Racke, Ohio State University; Shannon Dunn, University of Toronto

Theme: T cells have been implicated in the pathogenesis of MS by GWAS, histological analyses of MS lesions and animal model studies. An important role of B cells was recently demonstrated by successful clinical trials of B cell depleting agents in MS. This session will provide a review of our current understanding of the roles of T and B cells in the development of MS lesions. Clinical trial data, and putative mechanisms of action, of lymphocyte modulating therapies in MS will be discussed.
1:00pm - 1:10pm Opening Comments by Session Chairs
1:10pm - 1:35pm An Introduction to the Role of Lymphocytes in MS
Jennifer Gommerman, University of Toronto
1:35pm - 2:00pm B Cell Targeting Agents: Mechanism of Action in RRMS and PPMS
Anne Cross, Washington University in St. Louis
2:00am - 2:30am BREAK
2:30pm - 2:55pm HSCT in MS: Reshaping the Immune System and Long Term Impact on Disease Activity
Amit Bar-Or, U Penn
2:55pm - 3:20pm Alemtuzumab: Paradoxical Effects on Autoimmunity in Individuals MS
Alasdair Coles, University of Cambridge
3:20pm - 3:45pm Panel Discussion
3:45pm - 4:00pm BREAK
4:00pm - 5:00pm Cutting Edge Developments in MS Research
Chair: Benjamin Segal, University of Michigan
5:00pm - 6:30pm Awards Reception

Saturday, February 3, 2018

All Forum sessions strive to include one or more of these disciplines:

Clinical studies and trials
8:00am - 9:50am SESSION 4 - Microglia and Macrophages
Chairs: V Wee Wong, University of Calgary; Susan Gauthier, Cornell University

Theme: The otogeny and biology of microglia will be reviewed. Cutting edge research on the beneficial and destructive effects of microglia and macrophages during inflammatory demyelinating disease will be discussed.
8:00am - 8:10am Opening Comments by Session Chairs
8:10am - 8:35am Pathogenic and Beneficial Effects of Microglia in Neuroinflammatory Disease
Katerina Akassoglou, University of California - San Francisco
8:35am - 9:00am In Vivo Imaging of Microglial Activiation in MS
Caterina Mainero, Harvard
9:00am - 9:25am Targeting Microglia and Macrophages to Promote Repair in MS: Effects of Current Disease Modifying Therapies on Myeloid Cells and Future Directions
Veronique Miron, University of Edinburgh
9:25am - 9:50am Panel Discussion
9:50am - 10:05am BREAK
10:05am - 11:55am SESSION 5 - Astrocytes
Chairs: David Pleasure, UC Davis; Nicola Allen, Salk Institute

Theme: A general overview of astrocyte biology will be given. Cutting-edge research on the heterogeneity of astrocytes and their contribution to lesion progression and resolution in MS will be discussed.
10:05am - 10:15am Opening Comments by Session Chairs
10:15am - 10:40am An Overview of Astrocytes and Their Potential Role in CNS Pathology and Repair
Michael Sofroniew, UCLA
10:15am - 10:40am Neurotoxic Astrocytes and Potential Role in MS Pathogenesis
Shane Liddlelow, Stanford
11:05am - 11:30am S1P Receptor Modulation of Astrocytes in Animal Models of MS: Implications for a Role of Astrocytes in SPMS
Francisco Quintana, Harvard
11:30am - 11:55am Panel Discussion
11:55am - 1:00pm LUNCH
1:00pm - 3:15pm SESSION 6 - Oligodendrocytes and Their Precursors
Chairs: Tom Lane, University of Utah; Babette Fuss, Virginia Commonwealth

Theme: Chronic disability in MS may be due in part to a failure of oligodendrocyte differentiation and remyelination. The focus of this session is novel strategies for promoting these processes in patients.
1:00pm - 1:10pm Opening Comments by Session Chairs
1:10pm - 1:35pm Oligodendrocyte Differentiation and Myelination: An Overview
Wendy Macklin, University of Colorado
1:35pm - 2:00pm Enhancing OPC Differentiation in the Setting of MS
Charles Ffrench-Constant, University of Edinburgh
2:00pm - 2:25pm Strategies to Identify Candidate Remyelinating agents for MS Clinical Trials
Paul Tesar, Case Western Reserve
2:25pm - 2:50pm Remyelinating Agents: From Bench to Bedside
Ari Green, University of California - San Francisco
2:50pm - 3:15pm Panel Discussion
3:15pm - 3:25pm Closing Remarks