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Meet one of our dedicated MS researchers – Professor Ingrid van der Mei

In 2015, MS Research Australia funded 57 research projects around Australia. Here is a snapshot of just one project from a variety of research that would not be possible without the support of Kiss Goodbye to MS fundraisers.

Associate Professor Ingrid van der Mei from the Menzies Institute for Medical Research

There are currently no treatments available for people with Primary Progressive MS (PPMS), and our understanding of the risk factors for this type of MS is poor. Associate Professor Ingrid van der Mei from the Menzies Institute for Medical Research at the University of Tasmania is addressing this issue. Her project is exploring whether PPMS is similarly predicted by the same environmental risk factors associated with relapsing-remitting MS (such as EBV, Vitamin D, smoking), or whether PPMS is associated with an entirely unique set of risk factors.

This project will help to improve not only our understanding of the causes and mechanisms of PPMS, but will also help to understand the features of illness to improve prognosis in people currently living with PPMS. A/Professor van der Mei is an expert in epidemiological research and also currently manages the Australian MS Longitudinal Study, a survey-based project that has been running for over 15 years and provides researchers, advocacy groups and government agencies with practical information on how MS is impacting on people’s lives.

All funds raised by Kiss Goodbye to MS go towards research projects funded by MS Research Australia. In 2016, MS Research Australia are funding 47 research projects led by researchers around the country, to ultimately find a cure and to Kiss Goodbye to MS once and for all!