Molecular Biology

, Volume 53, Issue 4, pp 513–534 | Cite as

Genetic Markers for Personalized Therapy of Polygenic Diseases: Pharmacogenetics of Multiple Sclerosis

  • E. Yu. Tsareva
  • O. O. Favorova
  • A. N. Boyko
  • O. G. KulakovaEmail author


Pharmacogenetics (PG) investigates the inherited variants of the human genome that underlie individual differences in drug metabolic transformation, delivery, and mechanism of action. Not only the contributions of individual genes, but also their cumulative effect should be considered in the case of polygenic diseases, which include the majority of human diseases. Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a severe autoimmune neurodegenerative disorder of the central nervous system (CNS) and is polygenic in nature. Understanding the role that the immune system plays in the pathogenesis of MS helped to design drugs for its pathogenetic therapy. These drugs are known as the disease-modifying treatments (DMTs). Among these are interferon β (IFN-β) and glatiramer acetate (GA), whose treatment efficacy and long-term safety have been proven in many clinical trials. However their efficacy on MS course varies from highly effective to lack of response. Prognostic genetic biomarkers of treatment efficacy can help to identify the MS patient groups where a particular drug is preferential or even strictly indicated to use. The review summarizes the findings from pharmacogenetic studies evaluating the efficacy of IFN-β and GA in MS patients, including the author’s original data.


polygenic diseases allelic polymorphism biomarker epistasis multiple sclerosis pharmacogenetics interferon-β glatiramer acetate 



We are grateful to I.S. Kiselev for help in manuscript preparation.


This work was supported by the Russian Foundation for Basic Research (project no. 17-00-00206).


Conflict of interests. The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Statement of compliance with standards of research involving humans as subjects. All procedures used in this work were in accordance with the ethical standards of the Institutional Ethics Committee and the 1964 Declaration of Helsinki and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.


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Copyright information

© Pleiades Publishing, Inc. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • E. Yu. Tsareva
    • 1
  • O. O. Favorova
    • 1
  • A. N. Boyko
    • 1
  • O. G. Kulakova
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Pirogov Russian National Research Medical University, Ministry of Health of the Russian FederationMoscowRussia

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