Healing MS Summer 2022

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Healing MS

The IMSMP Newsletter to address the needs of our patients and keep you informed of the latest research treatments and ways to heal
Congratulations to the 2022 Graduating Class of Research Assistants at Tisch MSRCNY

Front (Left to Right): Nadia Celestin, Tara Edwards, Jaina Wollowitz, and Vanessa Kirschner
Back (Left to Right): Michaela Malin, Grant Feuer

Class of 2022:


Official SUNY Downstate Logos | SUNY Downstate Health Sciences University Nadia Celestin: Nadia received her BS in Psychology with a neuroscience concentration from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, MA. As a research assistant at Tisch MSRCNY, Nadia worked with Dr. Jamie Wong to identify pathological factors in the cerebrospinal fluid of individuals with primary progressive MS and sporadic ALS through Dr. Wong’s novel mouse models of both diseases. After Tisch, Nadia will be pursuing an MD degree at SUNY Downstate in Brooklyn, NY.  
Marching Order Logo of Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences at  the University at Buffalo 2020 Virtual Biomedical Sciences Graduate and  Undergraduate Commencement Ceremony Honored Speaker Undergraduate Awards  and Degree ... Tara Edwards: Tara earned a BA in Biochemistry from Vassar College, Poughkeepsie, NY. During her time at Tisch MSRCNY, Tara worked with Dr. Daviaud and his team on using cerebral organoids as a model to study MS. Next year, Tara plans to attend Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences at the University at Buffalo. 
Columbia University Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons Vector Logo  | Free Download - (.SVG + .PNG) format - SeekVectorLogo.Com Grant Feuer: Grant earned a BS in biomedical engineering from Cornell University. While at Tisch MSRCNY, Grant worked with Jerry Lin to uncover the epitopes/targets of antibodies produced by clonally expanded B cells found in the cerebrospinal fluid of patients with multiple sclerosis (MS). This was done in an effort to identify antigens of interest and understand the role that B cell infiltration into the central nervous system may play in MS. He was also involved in data collection for a longitudinal study exploring the efficacy of Covid-19 vaccinations in patients receiving B cell-depleting therapies. In the fall, Grant will pursue an MD degree at Columbia University Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons.
UCLA Health David Geffen School of Medicine Logo - UCLA Health Brand  Guidelines - Los Angeles, CA Vanessa Kirschner: Vanessa earned a BS in Biology from Wake Forest University, Winston-Salem, NC. During her time at Tisch MSRCNY, Vanessa worked with Dr. Alfonso to understand the role of Epstein Barr Virus (EBV) infection in the development of MS. She also characterized the T-cell response in MS patients receiving anti-CD20 treatment after COVD-19 vaccination. Next year, Vanessa will pursue an MD degree at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA.
University of Rochester School of Medicine & Dentistry - Home | Facebook Michaela Malin: Michaela earned a BA in Hispanic Literatures and Cultures from Wesleyan University, Middletown, CT. At Tisch MSRCNY, Michaela worked as a clinical research assistant with Dr. Sadiq and the clinical research team on the planning and execution of numerous studies including the Phase II stem cell trial and research investigating the effects of B-cell therapies on COVID-19 immune responses. Next year, Michaela will pursue an MD degree at the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry. 
Training – Weill Cornell Medicine – Department of Physiology and Biophysics Jaina Wollowitz: Jaina earned a BA in Chemistry and Molecular Biology & Biochemistry from Wesleyan University in Middletown, CT. While at Tisch MSRCNY, she worked with Dr. Harris to improve her understanding of how MSC-NPs interact with cells in the central nervous system to reduce inflammation and promote repair. This summer Jaina will begin her PhD studies at the Tri-Institutional Chemical Biology PhD Program through Weill Cornell Medical College, Rockefeller University, and Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center.
The Wellness Column
Physical Therapy/Rehabilitation News
Improve your physical wellness by preparing for a productive outdoor season
As the warmer weather starts, people with multiple sclerosis can be conflicted about whether they should go outside or not.  The most common reasons people with MS choose not to go outside are the fear of exerting too much effort and that the heat will make them feel worse. However, it is widely accepted that exposure to some sun, getting fresh air, and getting out of one’s home on a daily basis can have a substantially positive effect on health and wellbeing.  The benefits include improved sleep patterns, cognitive and social health, and an increase in physical strength and motion.
For many patients seen by the rehabilitation professionals at the IMSMP, getting outside every day is included in the recommendations as part of a home exercise program. This can mean just a few feet outside your home or getting into a vehicle towards a desired location.  Though it may feel overwhelming, the benefits of going outside are significant to one’s overall healthcare and management of their MS. 
Creating a purpose for outdoor ventures can be helpful. Managing a small or part of a large garden can be a reason to be outside every day.  Managing a garden or going outside with a dog or pet could be great reasons to get outside every day. The list can go on and on, but it is the person with MS and their caregivers who must prepare for this daily activity. 
Structural barriers that may hinder one should be addressed so there can be safe mobility when getting in and out of the home regardless of whether one walks or uses wheeled mobility.  Weather barriers such as rain should not restrict outdoor activities but should empower one to plan and conquer with appropriate rain gear and device coverings. For those working remotely, time constraints can also create a scheduling barrier. However, anyone who works from home must take time to get outside in order to maintain a healthy lifestyle.  This is especially true for anyone with mobility limitations. Temperature barriers are common for people with MS who have increased symptoms with high temperatures outside.  This can be overcome in multiple ways:
 1) Wear a cooling vest;
2) Go outside before 10am or after 6pm on days that are “too hot”;
3) Hydrate well and have a personal fan for cooling;
4) Know that you only need to be outside for short periods of time to achieve some of the health benefits described above.
People who let barriers stop them will often become unnecessarily deconditioned. Don’t let that happen to you. Spend the time now to consider how you will prepare to be outdoors. For more information about cooling vests and how to increase your frequency of outdoor activities, schedule an appointment with a physical therapist or occupational therapist at the IMSMP.
News on Naturopathy

Eat Bitter Foods for Better Digestion

Sluggish digestion is common in many neurological diseases, including MS.

MS can interrupt the nerve communication between the brain and the intestines, causing the movement of the intestines to become discoordinated or slowed, leading to bowel issues and constipation.

Sweet, sour, salty, bitter and umami (savory) are the five main tastes. Better health comes from ingesting a balance of these five flavors. Though they add an important element to balancing both our food flavors and our health, many people have a natural preference to steer away from bitter flavored foods.

Bitter tasting foods increase our secretion of digestive enzymes, improving digestion and absorption, and they stimulate peristalsis, the constriction and relaxation of the muscles of the intestine that create wave-like movements to push the contents of the intestines forward, improving bowel function and reducing gas, bloating and constipation.

Some bitter foods to seek out for better digestive health:

· Dark leafy greens: collard greens, broccoli rabe, dandelion

· Chicory family: radicchio and endive

· Bitter beverages: black coffee, green tea

· Very dark chocolate

· Citrus pith (rind), grapefruit

Consuming bitter foods can be a useful tool to help improve sluggish gut motility. Learn more tips and tools for eating better with MS by enrolling in a cooking class with Dr. Bates in our Kitchen Lab at the Judi Volk-Weiss Wellness Center at the IMSMP. Email Kitchenlab@imsmp.org for more information.

Social Work News 

Now that the weather is warming up, please come to the center and join one of our support groups!  Throughout COVID, our groups were a lifeline to our patients during a time when many of us felt isolated.  To learn more about joining any of our groups, please call the Social Work Department at 212-265-8070. 

Women’s Coping and Connection Group 

Co-ed Coping with MS Group 

Newly Diagnosed Group 

Phone Support Group 

Spouse, Partner, and Caregiver Group 

Nursing News 

New Nurse Introduction:
Catherine Ancipiuk received her BSN from the accelerated nursing program at Wagner College in 2020. Her first job was at NYU on the bone marrow transplant unit, where she learned how to provide care for immunocompromised patients in an in-patient setting. Catherine then went on to work in outpatient at a primary care clinic for adults with Medicare in underserved neighborhoods. She found that her interests were in specialized outpatient care and joined the IMSMP team in February of 2022. Catherine states: “I am very excited to be part of a wonderful team of healthcare workers that are so dedicated to providing the best MS care possible!”
Development Department News
All in the Family
Seventh-grade students at St. Bernadette Catholic Academy worked together in small groups on a “Lenten Giving Project”, raising money to support various community organizations. Gianvito, Mario, John Faro, Niko, Emilio, Carmine, and Antonio chose to support Tisch MS Research Center of New York, in honor of Gianvito’s mom, Angela Padormo. These charitable students raised money for our research and even got to check out the groundbreaking projects happening in our lab. As Gianvito said, ”Tisch is an amazing research center that makes hope possible!” Thank you to our enthusiastic new fundraisers, as well as the Padormo family and St. Bernadette Catholic Academy, for their support of Tisch MSRCNY! 
Email us at: TTMS@TischMS.org
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