Multiple Sclerosis, 1 October 2002, vol. 8, no. 6, pp. 459-462(4)
Nakashima I.; Fujihara K.; Misu T.; Fujimori J.; Sato S.; Takase S.; Itoyama Y.
 Department of Neurology, Tohoku University School of Medicine, Sendai 980-8574, Japan  Department of Neurology, Kohnan Hospital, Sendai 982-8523, Japan
The cerebrospinal fluid oligoclonal IgG bands (OB) are less frequently observed in Japanese multiple sclerosis (MS) patients compared with Caucasian patients.
We studied 40 consecutive Japanese MS patients to investigate the differences in the clinical and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) features of MS between OB-positive patients and OB-negative ones.
Among the 40 patients, 22 (55%) patients were OB-positive by either agarose gel electrophoresis (AGE) or isoelectric focusing (IEF), and 18 (45%) patients were OB-negative by both AGE and IEF.
There were differences between the two groups only in the clinical forms of MS, but not in terms of gender, onset age, disease duration, or disease severity.
In the OB-negative group, nine (50%) of the patients had the optic–spinal form of MS (OS-MS), but only one patient (4.5%) in the OB-positive group had OS-MS.
Although most OB-positive patients showed brain MRI lesions typical of MS, 13 (72%) of the OB-negative patients showed no or few brain MRI lesions and the rest of the OB-negative patients showed atypical MS lesions, such as diffuse white matter lesions or large ring-enhanced lesions.
Our results suggest that the majority of OB-negative Japanese MS patients show either no or few brain MRI lesions or atypical brain MRI lesions.