Horizon 2020 Framework Programme for Research and Innovation (2014-2020)

The consortium name ‘MultipleMS’ refers to the disease Multiple Sclerosis, the multiple manifestations thereof and to the size and multiplicity of the partnership. In this project, universities and companies across 11 European countries and the US will unite efforts to tailor the development and application of therapies to the individual MS patient. Behind the scenes we are working on the required approvals, data transfer agreements and database solutions. In the course of October 2017 we expect to start inclusions of newly diagnosed patients across our clinical centres and start the harmonisation of our existing data.

First Norwegian prospective cohort patient included.

Picture of senior technician pipetting patient samples in a clean flow cabinet

We have finally received all required approvals to start collecting newly diagnosed patients. On the 8th of January 2018 the first Norwegian MS patient was included in the prospective cohort, which is at the core of the entire project. We will continue to collect at our inclusion sites across Europe until we reach a cohort of 500 newly diagnosed patients, all of whom will be followed closely with our harmonised protocols for data collection.

PhD and Postdoc challenge Copenhagen started

Photo of the MultipleMS PhD and Postdoc challenge

After an informal lunch we have now started our official PhD and Postdoc challenge in Copenhagen. We thank Novartis Denmark for their contribution that facilitates this meeting. With 3-4 minute pitches, we will compete for a prize consisting of research funds to realise the pitched research. The winning pitches will be announced on this website as well.

General assembly in Paris and the stakeholder database

Group photo MultipleMS in the October meeting in Paris

The general assembly is taking place in Paris.

MultipleMS will establish a stakeholder database, which can be used to inform beneficiaries from the project and other interested parties.
This database is accessed through a web-based form.

Stakeholder survey

MultipleMS has as a goal to improve healthcare in MS. In order to identify focus areas we launched a "market survey". Everybody who is interested in MS, either from a personal or professional perspective may participate. The results will guide our innovation management team in their continuous effort to identify areas of interest.

Access the short survey here

'Why' MultipleMS - our collective mission statement

Picture of the MultipleMS group

“We believe that multiple sclerosis (MS) can be beaten. We are a diverse group of scientists and physicians with a common goal: to improve the lives of people with MS. In the MultipleMS project, we will weave together the unique medical histories of each person with MS to paint a detailed molecular portrait of the disease. Over the next five years we will use this molecular portrait to develop new ways to stop the disease in its tracks and develop protocols for choosing therapies for each individual patient” The MultipleMS consortium

'Why' MultipleMS - Rosalie Witjas, PhD

Profile picture of Rosalie Witjas, PhD

"I like to work at the forefront of science in relation to its impact in society, especially when potential scientific results may positively influence the health of people all around the globe. The MultipleMSproject has great potential to positively affect MS patients and their relatives irrespective of the exact project outcomes. It makes me happy that I can play a role in this translation phase and to see and feel the amount of energy that I put in is being multiplied through the activities undertaken by all other people involved." Rosalie Witjas, PhD, Senior Consultant Innovation & Development at PwC.

'Why' MultipleMS - Wouter Jansen, PhD

Profile picture Wouter Jansen, PhD

“As innovation advisor in MultipleMS, I am keen to help connecting bright people with bright ideas and create an innovative, trusted, and inspiring environment to bring those ideas to life.” Wouter Jansen, Innovation Manager of MultipleMS, PwC

'Why' MultipleMS - Professor Jasper Tegner

Profile picture of Jasper Tegner

“In MultipleMS we have a unique opportunity to develop and apply powerful algorithms for integrating rich data from DNA to patient records, enabling a more personalized and preventive approach for patients suffering from Multiple Sclerosis” Jesper Tegnér, Chaired Strategic Professor in Computational Medicine, YouHealth (Sweden).

'Why' MultipleMS - Ass. Professor Chris Cotsapas

Profile picture of Associate Professor Chris Cotsapas

“We take on the hardest and most pressing problems in human disease, and bring whatever resources and methods are required to bear on them. We consider our inability to predict an individual’s disease course and response to therapy in MS unacceptable, and participate in theMultipleMS project to solve this problem.” Chris Cotsapas, Associate Professor of Neurology and of Genetics (Yale University School of Medicine, USA)

'Why' MultipleMS - Professor Sergio Baranzini

Profile picture Professor Sergio Baranzini

“Although we live in the information age, integration and contextualization of this information has consistently been realized at a much slower pace in the healthcare space than in financial, consumer or retail industries. This is due in part to the enormous complexity of the biological systems underlying the human body, but also due to the lack of standardization and cooperation across research teams doing similar work. MultipleMS is an important step in that direction and it will provide a platform for researchers and patients with MS to advance personalized medicine together”
Sergio Baranzini, Professor at UCSF, USA.

'Why' MultipleMS - Professor Hanne F. Harbo

Profile photo of Prof. Hanne F. Harbo

“As a neurologist I regularly meet persons suffering from MS, who I aim to treat and help in the best possible way. By contributing to this cutting edge MultipleMS research project, I hope we will bring this field an important step forward. This project allows us to analyze multiple facets of MS in close collaboration with well-established successful consortia and excellent researchers worldwide, giving us a great opportunity to exploit and implement novel research to the best of our patients, their families and other stakeholders." 
Hanne Flinstad Harbo, Professor of Neurology, University of Oslo/Oslo University Hospital

'Why' MultipleMS - Ass. Prof. Maja Jagodic

Profile photo of Associate Professor Maja Jagodic

“I have always been fascinated by the complexity of the human body and how devastating the consequences of tipping a balance between a myriad of functions can be. Understanding this complexity, no matter how challenging, is the only way to truly make a difference for people who suffer from debilitating diseases such as MS. This is what MultipleMS is for me.” 
Maja Jagodic, Karolinska Institutet, Sweden.

'Why' MultipleMS

Profile photo of Prof. Ingrid Kockum

Project leader professor Ingrid Kockum (Karolinska Institutet, Sweden) about why MultipleMS is important:

“I am excited about the MultipleMS project since I think that we will be able to address research questions that we have not been able to address efficiently previously through collaboration between researchers with unique experiences and because we are utilizing data from different fields in joint analyses.
I am motivated to carry out this project because I believe that it will result in real progress in understanding aspects of Multiple Sclerosis pathogenesis which can be used for improvement of treatment of Multiple Sclerosis.”

Consortium login



Ingrid Kockum (project leader)

email: ingrid.kockum@ki.se

MultipleMS becomes member of the IHEC consortium

MultipleMS will in part rely on the large amount of work that was performed by the IHEC consortium. During the last meeting of the IHEC consortium MultipleMS was accepted as member of this ongoing consortium. Furthermore, MultipleMS participants Chris Cotsapas and Stephan Beck now serve as International Scientific Steering Committee members of the IHEC consortium.

Global partnership launched to enable personalized therapies in multiple sclerosis

MS is an immune-mediated disease and a leading cause of non-traumatic disability in young adults in Europe, affecting over 2 million persons worldwide. MS is a highly heterogeneous disease and a cure for MS is not yet available. As the result of current treatments varies strongly from patient to patient, predicting the specific beneficial treatment for each patient would improve disease management.

“What is truly unique about this project is the scale of the partnership and the huge amount and different kinds of patient data that will be combined. Our novel approach is to take the multifaceted nature of MS as the starting point for identifying personalized treatment opportunities in MS”, Professor Ingrid Kockum of KI, coordinator of the project, stated.

The project builds on the foundations and research networks laid out by earlier consortia such as the Nordic MS genetics network, the International MS Genetics Consortium (IMSGC) and International Human Epigenome Consortium (IHEC).

“The project will combine a variety of data, such as, clinical, genetic, epigenetic, molecular, MRI and lifestyle data from more than 50,000 MS patients and 30,000 healthy individuals to elucidate differential disease characteristics in patients”, Professor Kockum says.

In parallel with the integration of the collectively available data, a sample of newly diagnosed patients will be followed longitudinally, resulting in a harmonized cohort to verify the lead findings. Based on this integrated information, the aim is that both existing and new treatments can be personalized based on characteristics and biomarkers in individual patients.

MultipleMS group photo taken at the kickoff meeting in Paris on the 24th of January 2017.
MultipleMS group photo taken at the kickoff meeting in Paris on the 24th of January 2017.