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Analysis of immunoglobulin secretion by lymph organs with myasthenia gravis

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Objectives– To investigate in vitro anti-acetylcholine receptor (AChR) antibody secretion by lymph organs with myasthenia gravis (MG) with special attention to clinical status and stages. Materials and methods– Twenty MG patients before therapy were included in this study. Four patients were negative for serum anti-AChR antibodies (AChRAb). All patients received extended thymectomy. Thymic cells, bone marrow (BM) cells and peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) were cultured for 1 week. AChRAb secretion and IgG secretion in the culture medium were determined by immunoprecipitation assays and ELISA respectively. Results– PBMC secreted AChRAb and IgG most efficiently, followed by BM cells, and then thymic cells. Even in patients whose diseases were of short duration (less than 2 months), the tendency was not changed. AChRAb secretion by BM cells and PBMC significantly correlated with serum AChRAb levels. Thymectomy did not change AChRAb or IgG secretion by PBMC within 3 months. AChRAb secretion by PBMC paralleled the clinical status. Some seronegative patients turned positive by culturing PBMC. Conclusion– PBMC is the most efficient site at producing AChRAb, even in patients of short duration (equal to, or less than, 2 months). Monitoring AChRAb secretion by PBMC is useful to estimate the autoimmune activity of MG.

Keywords: anti-acetylcholine receptor antibody; lymph organs; myasthenia gravis

Document Type: Short Communication


Affiliations: 1: First Department of Pathology School of Medicine, Kanazawa University, 2: Fukui Saiseikai Hospital 3: Department of Neurology School of Medicine,

Publication date: 2001-01-01

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