Routine CSF parameters as predictors of disease course in multiple sclerosis: an MSBase cohort study

Dekeyser C., Hautekeete M., Cambron M., Van Pesch V., Patti F., Kuhle J., ...More

Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery and Psychiatry, 2024 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Publication Date: 2024
  • Doi Number: 10.1136/jnnp-2023-333307
  • Journal Name: Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery and Psychiatry
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, BIOSIS, CAB Abstracts, CINAHL, Psycinfo, Veterinary Science Database
  • Karadeniz Technical University Affiliated: Yes


Background It remains unclear whether routine cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) parameters can serve as predictors of multiple sclerosis (MS) disease course. Methods This large-scale cohort study included persons with MS with CSF data documented in the MSBase registry. CSF parameters to predict time to reach confirmed Expanded Disability Status Scale (EDSS) scores 4, 6 and 7 and annualised relapse rate in the first 2 years after diagnosis (ARR2) were assessed using (cox) regression analysis. Results In total, 11 245 participants were included of which 93.7% (n=10 533) were persons with relapsing-remitting MS (RRMS). In RRMS, the presence of CSF oligoclonal bands (OCBs) was associated with shorter time to disability milestones EDSS 4 (adjusted HR=1.272 (95% CI, 1.089 to 1.485), p=0.002), EDSS 6 (HR=1.314 (95% CI, 1.062 to 1.626), p=0.012) and EDSS 7 (HR=1.686 (95% CI, 1.111 to 2.558), p=0.014). On the other hand, the presence of CSF pleocytosis (≥5 cells/ µL) increased time to moderate disability (EDSS 4) in RRMS (HR=0.774 (95% CI, 0.632 to 0.948), p=0.013). None of the CSF variables were associated with time to disability milestones in persons with primary progressive MS (PPMS). The presence of CSF pleocytosis increased ARR2 in RRMS (adjusted R2=0.036, p=0.015). Conclusions In RRMS, the presence of CSF OCBs predicts shorter time to disability milestones, whereas CSF pleocytosis could be protective. This could however not be found in PPMS. CSF pleocytosis is associated with short-term inflammatory disease activity in RRMS. CSF analysis provides prognostic information which could aid in clinical and therapeutic decision-making.