2021 TSF Grant Recipients

December 1, 2021 — The Sumaira Foundation is proud to announce the grant recipients of TSF’s 2021 SPARK and Unicorn grants. Congratulations to our 5 recipients who each received $25,000 to initiate their research projects!

HLA Association in Pediatric MOG-AD, NMOSD, and ADEM

2021 Unicorn Grant recipient

Nusrat Ahsan, MD | Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles (Los Angeles, CA)

Aim 1 | To determine the presence of HLA association in pediatric onset MOG-AD, NMOSD and ADEM

Aim 2 | To determine HLA association’s role in relapse

 

Blood Biomarkers Predict Cognitive Impairment in NMOSD

2021 SPARK Grant recipient

May Han, MD | Stanford Medicine (Stanford, CA)

Aim 1 | Define the cellular immunopathogenesis of cognitive impairment in NMOSD

Aim 2 | Define the molecular immunopathogenesis of cognitive impairment in NMOSD

Aim 3 | Define how immune homeostasis reverses cognitive impairment in NMOSD

 

Mapping the Employment Impact of NMOSD

2021 SPARK Grant recipient

Farrah Mateen, MD, PhD | Massachusetts General Hospital (Boston, MA)

Aim 1 | To depict the impact of neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorder (NMOSD) on employment, job loss, and work hours in a multi-country prospective survey-based study of people living with NMOSD

 

MOG IgG Titer and its Association with Clinical Outcomes and Immune Profiles

2021 SPARK Grant recipient

Jamie McDonald, MD, MSc | Stanford Medicine (Stanford, CA)

Aim 1 | Develop longitudinal database and biorepository for MOG-AD patients at the Stanford Neuroimmunology Center, including multi-center collaboration. Demographic, clinical outcomes, biochemical (including MOG-IgG serial titers, presence of co-neuronal antibodies), neuroimaging and neuropsychological outcomes, when available

Aim 2 | To determine if MOG IgG positivity or titer predicts index event severity or relapse

Aim 3 | To correlate MOG IgG serostatus with serum and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) immune profiles to inform immunopathogenesis and treatment

 

In Vivo Assessment of Retinal Vascular Integrity in NMOSD and MOG-AD

2021 SPARK Grant recipient

Elias Sotirchos, MD | Johns Hopkins Medicine (Baltimore, MD)

Aim 1 | To compare retinal vascular plexus densities between eyes with a history of optic neuritis from people with NMOSD, MOG-AD, MS and controls

Aim 2 | To compare retinal vascular plexus densities between eyes without a history of optic neuritis from patients with NMOSD, MOG-AD, MS and controls

Aim 3 | To assess correlations of retinal vascular plexus densities with visual function in NMOSD, MOG-AD and MS eyes