Posted by: Thixia | October 25, 2008

Epstein-Barr virus DNA

Epstein-Barr virus DNA and RNA in multiple sclerosis.

 

Quantitative PCR for Epstein-Barr virus DNA and RNA in multiple sclerosis.

 

   

Background

 

Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) is associated with MS, but it is not clear whether EBV plays a role in the pathogenesis of MS.

 

 

Hypothesis

 

We hypothesized that the immune control of EBV might be defective in MS, and that reactivation of EBV might drive the immune response in MS.

 

 

Methods

 

We collected blood from controls and patients with MS, and measured the amounts of EBV, DNA, and RNA using quantitative PCR.

 

 

Results

 

We found that EBV DNA and RNA were frequently detectable in peripheral blood leukocytes from both patients with MS and normal controls. There was no significant difference between patients with MS or controls.

 

Paired samples from a small number of subjects suggest that EBV DNA may increase before and during clinical relapse.

 

 

Conclusions

 

We conclude that the immune control of EBV infection is similar in MS and controls, and that reactivation of EBV may correlate with MS disease activity.

 

   

Department of Neurology,

University of Texas Medical School at Houston,

Houston, Texas, USA.

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