Without doubt, 2024 is going to be a busy and exciting year for MS Australia and the MS community in Australia. Key activities include:
PLATYPUS: Our new, world-leading clinical trial, conducted in partnership with the UK MS Society’s OCTOPUS trial, will engage the first trial participants this year as we seek to find effective treatments for progressive forms of MS.
END MS: We will work with colleagues at MS Canada to develop a proposal for a global research collaboration to find ways to achieve early detection of people at risk of developing MS and ensure early intervention to stop progress to MS. This work is being conducted under the new global ‘Pathways to Cures’ research roadmap.
EBV: As the new EBV research programs get underway, funded with $12m from the MRFF following MSA advocacy, we will bring the researchers together to coordinate and share information through a new MSA research platform.
New research grants: In February, we will be announcing the outcomes of our most recent multi-million-dollar research grant round.
Trial.Smart: We are rolling out our new resource for people living with MS that provides education about clinical trials and what is involved when participating in these critical activities. Nine modules are now available online for people living with MS.
Neurological Summit: Through our leadership of the Neurological Alliance Australia, we will help host the first national neurological summit at Parliament House in June to push for better funding for neurological research, better access to care, and better data collection for neurological conditions. We will also launch a ‘one-in-six’ campaign to put the case for a national action plan for neurological conditions centre stage ahead of the 2025 federal election.
The MAY 50K: We will be getting our training in early as we prepare for our single most important annual fundraiser for MS research, The May 50K! With an ambitious, globally significant research program, it’s critical we find the funds to help us achieve our goal – a world without MS – as soon as humanly possible.
MS Prevalence and Economic Impact Study: We have commissioned a major review of MS prevalence in Australia as well as its economic impact. This work is well underway, with preliminary results expected early next year.
MS symposium: Towards the end of the year, we will hold a one-day symposium on a critical topic for the MS community. This will be a great way to round off what will be a busy, important year as we continue to drive change that benefits every Australian living with MS, their carers, families and friends.
Stay tuned, and hold on to your hats.