More MS news articles for Nov 2001

Chlamydia Pneumoniae and Multiple Sclerosis

Nervenarzt 2001 Oct;72(10):820-3
Derfuss T, Hohlfeld R, Meinl E.
Abteilung fur Neuroimmunologie, Max-Planck-Institut fur Neurobiologie, Am Klopferspitz 18A, 82152 Martinsried.

Recently, an association between multiple sclerosis and Chlamydia pneumoniae infection has been suggested.

Because standardized PCR protocols are lacking, a series of studies could not clarify whether C. pneumoniae is present in brain tissue and CSF of MS patients.

Therefore, other studies focused on the humoral immune response against C. pneumoniae: 24% of MS patients, but only 5% of the control patients showed intrathecally produced antibodies against C. pneumoniae.

If an infection with C. pneumoniae was involved in the pathogenesis of MS, one would expect that, in analogy to other infections of the CNS, the oligoclonal bands in the CSF of MS patients would recognize the responsible agent.

However, the results we obtained by affinity-mediated immunoblots showed that the oligoclonal bands in the CSF of MS patients are not directed against Chlamydia antigen.

In contrast to this, we found that the immunoglobulins in the CSF of neuroborreliosis patients reacted strongly against Borrelia antigen in the affinity-mediated immunoblots.

In light of these results we assume that the intrathecal immunoglobulin production against C. pneumoniae is part of a polyspecific immune response.

Thus, it is not likely that C. pneumoniae is causally linked to the pathogenesis of multiple sclerosis.

PMID: 11688186 [PubMed - in process]