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Intrathecal antibody production against Epstein-Barr and other neurotropic viruses in pediatric and adult onset multiple scleros

Posted Nov 17 2009 10:20pm

MS is a complex disease of autoimmune origin with an unknown cause. Viruses may play a role in the pathogenesis of the disease, for example Epstein-Barr virus (EBV), a virus with a special ability to reach the central nervous system. The authors aimed to investigate to what extent EBV is involved in the pathogenesis of MS by comparing the frequency and intensity of antibody production within the central nervous system (CNS) against EBV, with the antibody production against other viruses also known for their ability to reach and involve the CNS (i.e. neurotropic viruses).

Since the authors found that the production of antibodies within the CNS against EBV was not higher than the production against other neurotropic viruses, the results of this study do not support the theory that EBV has a direct role in the pathogenesis of the disease. However, evidence from previous studies suggests that EBV may play a role in MS.

Therefore because the results of this study do not exclude an indirect pathogenic mechanism mediated by EBV, more studies are required.

authors: Pohl D, Rostasy K, Jacobi C, Lange P, Nau R, Krone B, Hanefeld F

source: J Neurol. 2009 Aug 28

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