The Progressive MS Alliance was initially established in 2012 as the International Progressive MS Collaborative.
The Alliance’s six founding members (the MS societies of Canada, Italy, the Netherlands, the UK and the USA, and the Multiple Sclerosis International Federation) made a joint commitment to speed up the development of treatment for progressive MS by removing scientific and technology barriers.
The Alliance formalised its purpose, structure and membership in 2013. It also agreed its four strategic objectives:
1. Raise profile and accelerate progress
We will raise the profile of and make progressive MS a global research priority by attracting the best minds in MS research, enabling collaboration and knowledge-sharing, and speeding up the testing, proving and regulatory approval of potential treatments to end progressive MS.
2. Secure resources and globalize research funding
By 2019, we will raise €22+ million and leverage talent and in-kind resources to support progressive MS research. We will increase worldwide funding capacity through international cooperation in fundraising and securing the necessary resources to drive large-scale, global MS research initiatives.
3. Inspire, galvanize and engage
We will stimulate awareness, engagement and active support to raise the profile and influence progress among priority stakeholders in the global MS community to end progressive MS .
4. Deliver operational excellence
Building on existing research, programs and progress, we will align MS organisations and international human, business and financial infrastructure, processes and resources. We will achieve operational excellence that engenders trust and confidence through outcome-driven scientific management, financial transparency, project management and multi-country organizational collaboration.
Many organisations have funded, and continue to fund, research into progressive MS. The Alliance will learn from that work and connect efforts to accelerate progress.
In 2013 the Progressive MS Alliance issued its first request for applications (RFA), inviting researchers to apply for two types of award:
The response to the RFA exceeded our expectations. In total we received 195 applications from researchers in 22 countries, 175 for Challenge Awards and 20 for Infrastructure.
In July 2014, following evaluation by our Scientific Steering Committees, the Alliance’s Executive Committee decided to fund 20 Challenge Awards covering topics such as rehabilitation, new diagnostic tests and repurposing of existing drugs.
We have now issued our second request for applications, for the Collaborative Network Awards.
Find out more about our research awards