Wednesday, 12 December 2012

Industry Neurologists: a necessary career choice

#MSBlog: Neurologists in industry!

Leppert D & Glanzman R On being a neurologist in industryAnnal Neurol DOI: 10.1002/ana.23812 

Neurologists in the pharmaceutical industry have an attractive and rewarding career path that offers the chance to participate in large projects, contribute directly to clinical breakthroughs in drug development, and translate biomarker research into applied practice. This article describes the different and common features of corporate, compared to academic environments, and highlights the key factors necessary for success in the business world. Integrity, communication skills, an open-minded attitude, and an ability to handle stress and manage complex organisational structures are prerequisites that enable physician-neuroscientists to pursue successful and exciting careers in the corporate environment.

"David Leppert and Robert Glanzman worked for Roche, when they wrote this article. Robert has subsequently moved on. Roche is the company that is  developing Ocrelizumab (anti-CD20) for RR and PPMS. It is clear that they have a major role to play in industry and have the skills that Pharma need to develop MS drugs. They have a complex job and have to work at the interface between principal investigators, neurologists running clinical trials, and industry. Roche would have difficulty running their trial programme without them."


  1. Sounds as if you're considering a career move Prof G ;-) Good for you - as long as you develop a cure for MS you can work for the devil.

    1. No career move! And Pharma are not the devil. Without them we would have no translation of research into treatments for MS.

  2. The neurology profession is full of cack-handed fools.

    My partner lost sight in her right eye some years ago. Nobody told her it might be MS. Her sight returned so she thought no more about it. Ten years later she lost use of her legs. MS was discounted as she showed none of the common neurological signs such as having poor reflexes. She in severe pain at this stage. One neurologist said her problem was hysteria and forced her to agree to see a psychiatrist . After other neurologists and rheumatologists saw her one decided she had ME.

    I met her a year later. After a time I was convinced it was not ME.I found papers on the net which said you could have MS without showing all the signs of common neurological tests. I insisted that she had an MRI scan. This showed all the signs of brain lesions. I contacted a university hospital professor who specialised in MS. His hospital had trained all the neurologist and rheumatologists we had seen . He agreed to see her but could find no physical signs of MS except her poor balance. He said he had never met a patient who had MS that he could not detect with his physical tests. He reluctantly decided to take her in to hospital for the full range of tests for MS. Further IRMs ,lumber puncture, electrical impulse tests eye tests etc. all showed clear MS. He failed to see her after the tests and then did not send her results and her diagnosis until I threatened to take him before a tribunal. Now neurologists trained at his university refuse to take her on. She will have to go over 150 miles away to see a neurologist.
    With effort she is now walking with the aid of myself and a walking cane. Apparently the neurone links can slowly be replaced though that too can lead to later problems.

    As noted elsewhere all cases are not the same but beware MS can be missed by neurologist who rely on hammers and tuning fork tests.

    1. Oh my how I understand what you have written. For 12 years I was going on and off to the national hospital for neurology saying I had ms. Every time, I was dismissed, it even says in my hospital note that I thought I had ms but categorically did not. Some 12 years later after paying privately for an MRI, which showed the classic lesion patten, it still wasn't believed and even the evoked potentials were normal, I finally had a spinal tap, which again showed MS and I got a diagnosis of MS. That was 14 years ago. But to thus day if I see a new doctor, they want to do new work-ups. I guess I should be thankful that my MS is so mild? Not really because it's not so mild, except physically - a different story cognitively. I wish I could qualify for lemtrada but I'm not sure I would. As I only see my neuro once a year, it won't be until Feb 2015 that I will find out. Meantime my 'smouldering ms, continues to smoulder.


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