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More MS news articles for June 2004

An altered immune response to Epstein-Barr virus in multiple sclerosis: a prospective study

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?cmd=Retrieve&db=pubmed&dopt=Abstract&list_uids=15210894

Neurology. 2004 Jun 22;62(12):2277-82
Sundstrom P, Juto P, Wadell G, Hallmans G, Svenningsson A, Nystrom L, Dillner J, Forsgren L.
Department of Neurology, Umea University Hospital, Sweden

OBJECTIVE:

To investigate the association between human herpesviruses and multiple sclerosis (MS), as well as between measles virus and MS.

METHODS:

The authors identified prospectively collected serum samples from 73 MS cases and retrospective sera from 161 MS cases in two population-based serum bank registers.

Analyses of IgG antibody responses in cases and matched referents were performed for Epstein-Barr virus (EBV [EBNA-1 and VCA]), human herpesvirus 6 (HHV-6), herpes simplex virus (HSV), varicella zoster virus (VZV), and measles.

RESULTS:

All cases showed signs of past EBV infection.

High activity to EBNA-1 and HHV-6 significantly (borderline significance for HHV-6) increased the risk for MS in prospective sera.

A discrepancy between activities to EBNA-1 and VCA was striking in MS samples collected less than 5 years before relapsing-remitting MS onset, where high activity to EBNA-1 significantly increased, and high VCA activity significantly decreased the risk for MS.

There was no support for major causal roles for HSV, VZV, or measles.

CONCLUSION:

Individuals who will develop MS exhibit an altered immune response against the EBV virus characterized by a high IgG activity to EBNA-1 in the absence of high activity to VCA, this being most pronounced in the 5-year period preceding MS onset.