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Anti-sulphatide antibodies in peripheral neuropathy.
  1. L H van den Berg,
  2. C L Lankamp,
  3. A E de Jager,
  4. N C Notermans,
  5. P Sodaar,
  6. J Marrink,
  7. H J de Jong,
  8. P R Bär,
  9. J H Wokke
  1. Department of Neurology, University Hospital Utrecht, The Netherlands.


    A study was carried out on 135 patients with chronic idiopathic neuropathy (63), neuropathy associated with monoclonal gammopathy (51, including eight with anti-MAG antibody activity) and the Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS) (21). Serum IgM, IgG and IgA anti-sulphatide antibody titres were compared with titres in 304 patients with other neurological or immunological diseases and in 50 normal subjects. Titres were presented a) as the highest serum dilution at which reactivity could be detected, and b) in the linear region of the optical density curve. A substantial number of patients with neurological or immunological diseases had higher titres than normal subjects. Compared with normal and disease controls, five patients with neuropathy associated with IgMk monoclonal gammopathy had raised titres of IgM anti-sulphatide antibodies and one patient with GBS had raised IgM, IgG and IgA anti-sulphatide antibodies in the acute phase of the disease. Two patients had a predominantly axonal sensory neuropathy with presenting symptoms of painful paresthesiae and minimal neurological deficit. Three patients had a predominantly demyelinating sensorimotor neuropathy associated with anti-MAG antibody activity. The patient with GBS had extensive sensory loss and antibody titres returned to normal within three weeks. Raised titres of anti-sulphatide antibodies occurred in several types of neuropathy, but all had some degree of sensory impairment and associated immunological abnormality.

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