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Abstract #4055

­Longitudinal mcDESPOT Shows Contrasting Patterns of Change in Multiple Sclerosis and Neuromyelitis Optica Cervical Cord

Anna Combes1, Lucy Matthews2, Gareth J Barker1, Steven CR Williams1, Katrina McMullen3, Janet Lam4, Anthony Traboulsee3, David KB Li3,4, Jacqueline Palace2, and Shannon Kolind3

1Neuroimaging, King's College London, London, United Kingdom, 2Nuffield Department of Clinical Neurosciences, University of Oxford, Oxford, United Kingdom, 3Medicine, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC, Canada, 4Radiology/UBC MS/MRI Research Group, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC, Canada

Neuromyelitis optica (NMO) severely affects the optic nerves and spinal cord and shares features with multiple sclerosis (MS). Ongoing diffuse neurodegeneration, however, is thought to be absent in NMO between relapses. We collected cervical cord mcDESPOT at baseline and one-year follow-up in patients and matched controls. While there were no significant changes in controls and MS patients, the NMO group showed a loss of cord volume, decrease in T1 and increase in myelin water fraction. We hypothesize that continuing atrophy in lesioned areas reduces the amount of damaged tissue relative to healthy tissue, and is responsible for the observed changes.

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