, Volume 33, Issue 1, pp 61–78 | Cite as

Monoclonal Antibodies for Multiple Sclerosis: An Update

  • Jonas Graf
  • Orhan Aktas
  • Konrad Rejdak
  • Hans-Peter HartungEmail author
Review Article


The use of monoclonal antibodies in multiple sclerosis (MS) patients is in a transitional period. Studies regarding well-established, effective antibodies such as natalizumab and alemtuzumab focus more and more on long-term efficacy and safety, risk management, and treating complications. Primary progressive MS, a disease that was long considered to be unmodifiable, is currently in focus following ocrelizumab being approved as the first drug with a proven beneficial effect on the disease course. Conversely, post-marketing safety mechanisms have also proven to function as daclizumab has been suspended after a series of relevant serious adverse events. Currently, new therapies are emerging that promise more convenience and an improved safety profile (ofatumumab) or remyelinating potential with clinical improvement (opicinumab). While it is very unlikely that monoclonal antibodies will ever cure MS, they have become very valuable therapeutic tools to better patient outcomes. This review focuses on developments of monoclonal antibodies used in the past, present, and near future in MS patients.


Compliance with Ethical Standards


No funding was received for the preparation of this review.

Conflict of interest

Jonas Graf received travel/meeting/accommodation reimbursements from Biogen, and Merck Serono. Orhan Aktas received, with approval of the Rector of Heinrich-Heine-University, grants from the German Research Foundation (DFG) and the German Ministry for Education and Research (BMBF) as part of the German Competence Network Multiple Sclerosis (Kompetenznetz Multiple Sklerose (KKNMS); for NEMOS (Neuromyelitis optica Studiengruppe, German Neuromyelitis Optica Study group) NationNMO-PAT FKZ 01GI1602B), the Eugène Devic European Network (EU-FP7), and honoraria and travel/accommodation/meeting expenses from Almirall, Bayer, Biogen, Medimmune, Merck Serono, Novartis, Roche, Sanofi-Genzyme, and Teva. Konrad Rejdak has no conflicts of interest to declare. Hans-Peter Hartung received, with approval of the Rector of Heinrich-Heine-University and the CEO of University of Düsseldorf Hospital, honoraria for consulting, serving on steering committees, and speaking from Biogen, CSL Behring, Geneuro, Genzyme, LFB, Medimmune, Merck, Novartis, Octapharma, Opexa, Receptos/Celgene, Roche, Sanofi, and Teva.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Neurology, University HospitalMedical Faculty Heinrich-Heine-UniversityDüsseldorfGermany
  2. 2.Department of NeurologyMedical University of LublinLublinPoland

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