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January 1966

The Effect of CSF Paraproteins on the Colloidal Gold Test

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Neurology, Mount Sinai Hospital, New York.

Arch Neurol. 1966;14(1):100-106. doi:10.1001/archneur.1966.00470070104013

ALTHOUGH the colloidal gold test has been used extensively for half a century,1 the basis for the reaction has not been completely clarified. Early investigators found that the globulin fraction of the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) was responsible for percipitation of the gold sol, while albumin tended to "protect" the gold from precipitation.2-5 The various reactions were believed to result from a balance of oppositely charged substances.2 Subsequent studies demonstrated that only the gamma globulin fraction was responsible for coagulation and that elevation of this component often resulted in a positive test.6,7

Although this observation has been confirmed by many workers,8-11 in some instances quantitative changes alone could not explain the results. Positive reactions may occur with normal amounts of gamma globulin, while considerable increases in this component (without significant elevations of other fractions) have been associated with negative reactions.12-15 Such observations suggest that qualitative