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More MS news articles for October 2002

Lack of human herpesvirus type 6 DNA in CSF by nested PCR among patients with multiple sclerosis

Rev Clin Esp 2002 Nov;202(11):588-91
Rodriguez Carnero S, Martinez-Vazquez C, Potel Alvarellos C, Alvarez Fernandez M, Prieto Gonzalez JM, Noya Garcia M, La Fuente Aguado Jd J, Sopena Arguelles B.
Unidad de Enfermedades Infecciosas-Servicio de Medicina Interna. Complexo Hospitalario Xeral-Cies. Vigo. Pontevedra. Spain.


The etiology of multiple sclerosis (MS) is currently unknown. Different viruses have tentatively been involved as causative agents of MS that would trigger an autoimmune response leading to demyelination plaques. There is controversy regarding the role that the human herpesvirus 6 (HHV-6) might play in this condition, and high antibody titers have been detected to HHV-6. HHV-6 DNA has also been detected by PCR both in blood and cerebrospinal fluid by means of the Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR). Immunohistochemistry studies were performed with histologic specimens from the white matters of patientes with MS. All this has led some authors to incriminate this virus as the triggering etiologic agent of this disease.

Patients and methods.

CSF specimens from 23 patients with Relapsing-Remitting MS were studied. The CSF specimens from 23 patients undergoing rachianesthesia were used as controls, and none of them had neurologic disorders. A nested PCR was performed in the collected specimens to detect specific DNA sequences of HHV-6.


No DNA sequences of HHV-6, EBV, VZV, CMV and HSV were detected in the tested specimens.


No HHV-6 DNA sequences were detected from CSF specimens of patients with MS. Further investigations on the association between HHV-6 and MS should be performed to elucidate the role of HHV-6 in the pathogenesis of this disease.