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March 1, 1965

Myasthenia Gravis— A Third Tissue-Specific Antibody?

JAMA. 1965;191(9):31-33. doi:10.1001/jama.1965.03080090105058

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The possible existence of a third type of tissue-specific antibody in blood sera of patients with myasthenia gravis was reported at a Conference on Myasthenia Gravis at the New York Academy of Science.

Immunofluorescent studies of antibody activity in 345 patients with that disease indicated that 15 (4%) patients had antibody to thymus, but not to muscle, Lee Burnett Weiner, PhD, Myasthenia Gravis Clinic, Mt. Sinai Hospital, New York, said. Studies also demonstrated a direct correlation between the fluctuating presence of antibody and the progress of the disease.

"Antibodies specific to skeletal or heart muscle and thymus, or to muscle only, have been observed many times. To my knowledge, however, antibodies specific to the thymus alone—provided their presence can be proved—have not been observed previously in humans," Kermit E. Osserman, MD, chief of the clinic, told The Journal. He stressed, "We are still not certain if this is possible, and

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