IgG class antibodies reactive with myelin basic protein (MBP) were determined by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) in serum and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) of 37 patients with multiple sclerosis and a control group of 32 patients with tension headache or psychoneurosis. Using standardised amounts of IgG from CSF and serum in ELISA, significantly higher mean antibody levels were found in CSF as well as in serum from the patients with multiple sclerosis. Ten (27%) of the multiple sclerosis CSF samples and 15 (41%) of the multiple sclerosis sera revealed anti MBP antibody levels exceeding 2 SD of the control group. Seven patients (19%) showed exclusive or higher levels of anti MBP antibodies in CSF, suggesting synthesis within the central nervous system. Analysis by ELISA for IgG subclasses of anti MBP antibodies revealed that they were restricted to IgG 1 in four patients and IgG 3 in one.
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