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Our Work

Commitment to Clinical Care

Our team of neurologists, rehabilitation specialists, neuropsychiatrists, neurosurgeons, neuro-ophthalmologists, therapists and other scientists facilitates the evaluation and management of patients affected by multiple sclerosis, transverse myelitis and neuromyelitis optica.

With this multidisciplinary approach, we are able to address patients’ neurological needs while providing long-term management plans for all health problems associated with these conditions.

Transverse myelitis patient Michelle Donato

A Young Dancer Relearns How to Walk

In her battle with transverse myelitis, Michelle Donato is steadily progressing toward recovery. Read Michelle’s story in NeuroNow.


To more effectively treat those afflicted, our physician-scientists seek to:

  • Deepen our understanding of the molecular and cellular changes that occur in individuals with multiple sclerosis, transverse myelitis and neuromyelitis optica.
  • Use this understanding as the foundation for studying the living brain using sophisticated imaging methods.
  • Develop and test promising therapies in clinical trials based on these findings.

Johns Hopkins is uniquely positioned to accomplish this by leveraging a deep, collaborative research infrastructure with expertise in basic science, animal models, brain imaging, clinical investigation and clinical trials.

How Myelin Is Damaged — and How to Repair It

Our research team has developed an innovative animal model that combines two existing models: one used to study how the immune system attacks myelin, and a second to better understand ways to repair the myelin.  

The new model clearly shows that immune cells participate in inhibiting natural remyelination, highlighting the important role inflammation likely plays in impairing the reparative process in MS.

The model provides means for researchers to help explain why remyelination fails so often in people with MS. Studies using this model could facilitate the development of therapies that might be more likely to promote remyelination in the setting of inflammation.

Can Taking Vitamin D Help People with MS?
Led by Peter Calabresi, a team of Johns Hopkins physicians conducted a pilot study in 2015 that showed taking a high dose of vitamin D3 is safe for people with multiple sclerosis and may help regulate the body’s hyperactive immune response. The study was published in an online issue of Neurology, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology.

Studies Currently Recruiting

Ublituximab for Acute Neuromyelitis Optica (NMO) Relapses Identifier: NCT02276963

A Double Blind Trial to Evaluate the Safety and Efficacy of Eculizumab in Relapsing NMO Patients (PREVENT Study) Identifier: NCT01892345
Principal Investigator: Alexion Pharmaceuticals

Efficacy and Safety Study as Monotherapy of SA237 to Treat NMO and NMOSD Identifier: NCT02073279
Principal Investigator: Chugai Pharmaceutical

A Pilot Study of Intermittent Calorie Restriction in Multiple Sclerosis Identifier: NCT02647502
Principal Investigator: Ellen M. Mowry, M.D.

Open-Label Study of Liothyronine in MS Identifier: NCT02506751
Principal Investigator: Scott Newsome, D.O.

Learn more about clinical trials for multiple sclerosis and transverse myelitis.

Patient Story: Partners in Advocacy
A good support system of family and friends is essential for those dealing with chronic demyelinating illness. For Karen Jackson, who is living with primary progressive MS, one of her most trusted allies is her physician, Peter Calabresi. Read more.

Discover Our Research

Basic science research in demyelinating disease at Johns Hopkins attracts talented researchers and facilitates fast tracking to clinical applications.

The Calabresi Lab
Peter A. Calabresi, M.D., Principal Investigator

Neuroimmunopathology Laboratory
Carlos A. Pardo-Villamizar, M.D., Principal Investigator

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