Dr. Rhonda Voskuhl, a neurologist, research-scientist and clinician at UCLA Health, was awarded the inaugural Rachel Horne Prize for Women’s Research in MS for her work studying sexual differences in susceptibility and progression in multiple sclerosis and identifying potential therapies to improve outcomes.

The neurology professor and Jack H. Skirball Professor of Multiple Sclerosis Research is also director of the UCLA Multiple Sclerosis Program. Voskuhl describes her research as a “Bedside to Bench to Bedside” approach — taking observations made in clinical settings to the laboratory to investigate relevant biological mechanisms and then designing clinical trials.

“Women make up the majority of MS patients,” Voskuhl said. “Only now are we beginning to fully appreciate the role of estrogens and X chromosome genes in disease pathogenesis. It has taken women in positions of influence in clinics, laboratories, newsrooms and politics to embrace the invaluable clues revealed by sex differences research.”

The $40,000 prize is awarded by the International Women in MS and supported by the European Committee for Treatment and Research in Multiple Sclerosis. Voskuhl will receive the award at their joint meeting in Italy next month. The $40,000 prize is made possible from the Horne Family Charitable Foundation.