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Absence of paraneoplastic antineuronal antibodies in sera of 145 patients with motor neuron disease
  1. Oliver Stich,
  2. Barbara Kleer,
  3. Sebastian Rauer
  1. Neurologische Klinik und Poliklinik der Albert-Ludwigs-Universitaet Freiburg, Freiburg, Germany
  1. Correspondence to:
 Professor Sebastian Rauer
 Neurologische Klinik und Poliklinik der Albert-Ludwigs-Universitaet Freiburg, Breisacher Strasse 64, D-79106 Freiburg, Germany; sebastian.rauer{at}


Background: Well characterised antineuronal antibodies (ANAbs) have been shown to be highly specific markers of neurological syndromes with a paraneoplastic aetiology. Previous reports indicate that pure motor neuron disease (MND) is rarely of paraneoplastic origin.

Objective: To screen systematically for the prevalence of well characterised paraneoplastic ANAbs in a large collective of patients with pure MND.

Methods: In a cohort of 145 patients with MND, the frequency of ANAbs was estimated by ELISA, employing recombinant antigens (HuD, Yo, Ri, CV2/CRMP5, Ma2 and amphiphysin).

Results: None of the sera revealed high antineuronal antigen reactivity. Very low reactivity was detected in only five sera, in all probability representing background activity.

Conclusion: According to these data, routine analysis for ANAbs in patients with isolated MND is not mandatory.

  • ALS, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis
  • ANAbs, antineuronal antibodies
  • LMN, lower motor neuron
  • MND, motor neuron disease
  • OD, optical density
  • PNS, paraneoplastic neurological syndromes

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  • Published Online First 21 February 2007

  • Ravo Diagnostika GmbH provided the recombinant antigens for this study.

  • Competing interests: S Rauer is a founding executive board member of Ravo Diagnostika GmbH, Freiburg, Germany.