A technique for detecting herpes simplex virus (HSV) antigen in CSF by measuring the antigen-antibody complex-activated complement-stimulated chemiluminescence in normal granulocytes was applied to 17 CSF samples from 10 patients with herpes simplex virus encephalitis (HSVE), and 26 samples from 22 patients with a non-HSVE brain illness. All CSF samples taken from the 5th to the 38th day (including seven from the 5th to the 10th day) of HSVE were positive, whereas those for all non-HSVE samples were negative. This assay required only five hours to yield a result.
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