Biomarkers in Multiple Sclerosis: a review of diagnostic and prognostic factors

Neurol Neurochir Pol. 2020;54(3):252-258. doi: 10.5603/PJNNS.a2020.0037. Epub 2020 May 28.


Introduction: Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is a chronic, demyelinating disease of the central nervous system which affects mostly young people. Because it leads to disability and cognitive impairment, it is crucial to recognise MS at an early stage.

State of the art: Magnetic resonance imaging is the golden standard in MS diagnosis. However, it is not an infallible diagnostic tool, especially at the stage of clinically isolated syndrome. The incorporation of oligoclonal bands in the diagnostic process of MS is a step towards the extension of diagnostic methods. Recently, a lot of research has been carried out on potential biomarkers in blood serum and cerebrospinal fluid that may be useful in the diagnosis of MS.

Clinical implications: This article summarises current knowledge on the use of new prognostic factors such as neurofilament light chain, chitinase 3-like 1 and 2, heat shock proteins, and tubulins in MS.

Future directions: Despite numerous studies on the use of biomarkers in the diagnosis of MS, more extensive research is needed to determine the clinical usefulness of these molecules and to develop diagnostic tests applicable in everyday practice. This in turn may result in earlier MS detection, faster implementation of treatment, and better therapeutic effects.

Keywords: biomarker; cerebrospinal fluid; multiple sclerosis; risk factor; serum.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Biomarkers
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Multiple Sclerosis*
  • Oligoclonal Bands
  • Prognosis


  • Biomarkers
  • Oligoclonal Bands