H2020 ReSToRe is a joint initiative by researchers and clinicians from Belgium, Spain, the Netherlands and Germany to find a cure for multiple sclerosis (MS), a condition that affects the brain and spinal cord.

Approximately one in every thousand people are diagnosed with the disease in Europe, mostly in their 20s, 30s and 40s.
Although there are many options available for treating and managing MS today, a cure is still lacking.

ReSToRe will test a new therapeutic approach based on patients’ own cells. This cell therapy, a type of personalised medicine, is currently being lined up for an initial Phase 1 study in patients with MS. The researchers have developed what are known as ‘tolerance-inducing’ or tolerogenic dendritic cells (tolDC) – a special category of immune cells that function as the immune system’s master switch.

In MS, the immune system has derailed, setting a cascade of processes in motion that ultimately results in damage to the body’s own cells and molecules.

After being treated with vitamin D in a laboratory, tolDC are re-administered to the patient and are then able to re-educate the patient’s immune system, interfering directly with the underlying disease processes.

Investigating the safety and feasibility of the vaccine will be a crucial step in the development of novel treatment strategies for MS. In order to perform this clinical trial, the researchers received support from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme, enabling collaboration among several EU research institutes and companies.

Our Mission

H2020 ReStoRe’s goal

This project is based on the major progress that has been made in the understanding and treatment of MS and focuses on the development of more selective immunomodulatory therapies with fewer side effects and with the potential for long-term disease remission. The overall goal of the ReSToRe project is to assess the safety and demonstrate first proof-of-concept of administering clinical-grade vitamin D3-treated tolDC loaded with myelin-derived peptides via different administration routes to treat a well-defined subpopulation of MS patients.

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What is MS? Context of the problem

In young adults, multiple sclerosis (MS) is the main cause of non-traumatic neurological disability with no cure available to date. Around 500,000 people in Europe and 2.5 million people worldwide suffer from MS.

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Dendritic cells

DC are a highly specialized population of white blood cells that are capable of orchestrating the immune responses. In their immature state, DC reside in the peripheral tissues, such as the skin, airways and intestine, where they function as the “sentinels” of the immune system, i.e. they patrol the body to capture antigens, including self-antigens, invading pathogens and certain malignant cells.

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News & Events

1st December 2022

The Fifth Consortium Meeting is postponed

The 5th annual consortium meeting, which was planned in December 2022, is postponed to early 2023. During this meeting we will provide our stakeholders with a complete overview of the acquired data from phase 1.

28th November 2022

Congratulations to Frederico Fondelli

PhD students Federico Fondelli from the Catalan Institute of Health (ICS) has been awarded for the best oral presentation ‘Influence of Multiple Sclerosis inflammatory context in the development of a tolerogenic dendritic cell therapy’ at the XVI Congress of the Catalan Society of Immunology, held in Barcelona on November 24-25, 2022. During his presentation, he referred to ReSToRe’s ongoing work as a potential new therapy for MS.

22nd November 2022

The Design of the Phase 2 Clinical Trial Is Complete

The design of the Phase 2 clinical trial is complete. The next step is the clinical trial application to the national competent authorities and the local ethics committees. This procedure takes approximately 90 days, which means that we can start this phase 2 study in spring 2023.

28th October 2022

The ReStoRe Team Attended ECTRIMS 2022 in Amsterdam

Our ReStoRe researchers attended the ECTRIMS conference, which took place in Amsterdam from 26 to 28 October. ECTRIMS is the largest international conference dedicated to basic and clinical research and care in multiple sclerosis. During this annual conference, our researchers had the opportunity to interact with participants from more than 100 different countries, resulting in lively and fruitful discussions.

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Publications

Combined Therapy of Vitamin D3-Tolerogenic Dendritic Cells and Interferon-β in a Preclinical Model of Multiple Sclerosis.
Author(s): Quirant-Sánchez B, Mansilla MJ, Navarro-Barriuso J, Presas-Rodríguez S, Teniente-Serra A, Fondelli F, Ramo-Tello C, Martínez-Cáceres E.
Published in: Biomedicines. 2021 Nov 24;9(12):1758.

Safety and immunological proof-of-concept following treatment with tolerance-inducing cell products in patients with autoimmune diseases or receiving organ transplantation: A systematic review and meta-analysis of clinical trials.
Author(s): Willekens B, Wens I, Wouters K, Cras P, Cools N.
Published in: Autoimmun Rev. 2021 Aug;20(8):102873

Made to Measure: Patient-Tailored Treatment of Multiple Sclerosis Using Cell-Based Therapies.
Author(s): Wens I, Janssens I, Derdelinckx J, Meena M, Willekens B, Cools N.
Published in: Int J Mol Sci. 2021 Jul 14;22(14):7536.

Transfection of Vitamin D3-Induced Tolerogenic Dendritic Cells for the Silencing of Potential Tolerogenic Genes. Identification of CSF1R-CSF1 Signaling as a Glycolytic Regulator.
Author(s): Mansilla MJ, González-Larreategui I, Figa-Martín N, Barallat J, Fondelli F, Sellés-Rius A, Quirant-Sánchez B, Teniente-Serra A, Martínez-Cáceres E.
Published in: Int J Mol Sci. 2021 Jul 8;22(14):7363.

Vitamin D3-Induced Tolerogenic Dendritic Cells Modulate the Transcriptomic Profile of T CD4+ Cells Towards a Functional Hyporesponsiveness.
Author(s): Navarro-Barriuso J, Mansilla MJ, Quirant-Sánchez B, Teniente-Serra A, Ramo-Tello C, Martínez-Cáceres EM.
Published in: Front Immunol. 2021 Jan 20;11:599623.

Paving the way towards an effective treatment for multiple sclerosis: advances in cell therapy
Author(s): M. J. Mansilla, S. Presas-Rodríguez, A. Teniente-Serra, I. González-Larreategui, B. Quirant-Sánchez, F. Fondelli, N. Djedovic, D. Iwaszkiewicz-Grześ, K. Chwojnicki, Đ. Miljković, P. Trzonkowski, C. Ramo-Tello, E. M. Martínez-Cáceres
Published in: Cellular & Molecular Immunology, Issue 18/6, 2021, Page(s) 1353-1374, ISSN 1672-7681

Guidelines for analysis of low-frequency antigen-specific T cell results: Dye-based proliferation assay vs 3H-thymidine incorporation
Author(s): Daniela Di Blasi, Iris Claessen, Annelies W. Turksma, Josine van Beek, Anja ten Brinke
Published in: Journal of Immunological Methods, Issue 487, 2020, Page(s) 112907, ISSN 0022-1759

Ways Forward for Tolerance-Inducing Cellular Therapies- an AFACTT Perspective
Author(s): Anja ten Brinke, Marc Martinez-Llordella, Nathalie Cools, Catharien M. U. Hilkens, S. Marieke van Ham, Birgit Sawitzki, Edward K. Geissler, Giovanna Lombardi, Piotr Trzonkowski, Eva Martinez-Caceres
Published in: Frontiers in Immunology, Issue 10, 2019, ISSN 1664-3224

Tolerogenic dendritic cell-based treatment for multiple sclerosis (MS): a harmonized study protocol for two phase I clinical trials comparing intradermal and intranodal cell administration
Author(s): Willekens B, Presas-Rodríguez, Mansilla M, Derdelinckx J, Lee W-P, Nijs G, De Laere M, Wens I, Cras P, Parizel PM, Van Hecke W, Ribbens A, Billiet T, Adams G, Couttenye M, Navarro-Barriuso J, Teniente-Serra A, Quirant-Sánchez B, López-Díaz de Cerio A, Inogés S, Prósper F, Kip A, Verheij H, Gross CC, Wiendl H, van Ham SM, ten Brinke A, Barriocanal AM, Massuet-Vilamajó A, Hens N, Berneman Z,
Published in: BMJ Open, Issue accepted for publication 23/7/2019, 2019, ISSN 2044-6055

MAP7 and MUCL1 Are Biomarkers of Vitamin D3-Induced Tolerogenic Dendritic Cells in Multiple Sclerosis Patients
Author(s): Juan Navarro-Barriuso, María José Mansilla, Bibiana Quirant-Sánchez, Alicia Ardiaca-Martínez, Aina Teniente-Serra, Silvia Presas-Rodríguez, Anja ten Brinke, Cristina Ramo-Tello, Eva M. Martínez-Cáceres
Published in: Frontiers in Immunology, Issue 10, 2019, ISSN 1664-3224

Beyond the Magic Bullet: Current Progress of Therapeutic Vaccination in Multiple Sclerosis
Author(s): Barbara Willekens, Nathalie Cools
Published in: CNS Drugs, Issue 32/5, 2018, Page(s) 401-410, ISSN 1172-7047

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Patient information

This is a medical-scientific study, more specifically an open-label Phase I clinical trial, limited to Belgium and Spain in which about twenty patients per country will participate. Below you will find non-committal information about the study. Feel free to share and discuss this information with your neurologist.

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Patiënt informatie

Dit is een medisch-wetenschappelijk onderzoek, meer bepaald een open-label fase I klinische studie, beperkt tot België en Spanje waaraan in totaal een twintigtal patiënten zullen deelnemen. Hieronder vindt u, geheel vrijblijvend, meer informatie over de studie. Indien u dat wenst, kan u deze informatie ook delen en bespreken met uw neuroloog.

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Información del paciente

El estudio RESTORE está diseñado para personas que sufren esclerosis múltiple (EM). Se trata de un ensayo clínico Fase I que se realiza en 2 países: Bélgica y España. Está previsto que en cada uno de los países participen unos veinte pacientes. A continuación encontrará información sobre este ensayo.

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Informationen zum Patienten

Dies ist eine medizinisch-wissenschaftliche Studie, genauer gesagt eine offene klinische Phase-I-Studie, beschränkt auf Belgien und Spanien, an der insgesamt zwanzig Patienten teilnehmen werden. Nachfolgend finden Sie unverbindlich weitere Informationen zur Studie. Wenn Sie möchten, können Sie diese Informationen auch mit Ihrem Neurologen teilen und besprechen.

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Information du patient

Une traduction sera disponible bientôt.