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September 1969

Lymphocytes of Patients With Myasthenia Gravis: Local Effects in Rats Following Intramuscular Administration

Author Affiliations

Brooklyn, NY
From the Department of Medicine, Maimonides Medical Center and State University of New York, Downstate Medical Center, Brooklyn, NY.

Arch Neurol. 1969;21(3):285-295. doi:10.1001/archneur.1969.00480150075010

ERUM globulin, particularly the IgG fraction, of patients with myasthenia gravis reacts with skeletal muscle, cardiac muscle and thymic epithelial cells, as well as nuclei of various tissues.1-7 These findings indicate a possible role of the serum globulin in the pathogenesis of myasthenia gravis. However, there is no evidence that the serum globulin is directly responsible for the neuromuscular block in myasthenic patients; in fact, after administration of serum from patients with high titers of muscle antibody to other myasthenic patients, neuromuscular transmission improved, suggesting that the globulin may exert a protective effect.8,9

There have been only a few studies on lymphocytes in myasthenia gravis. Tissue culture of lymphocytes of myasthenic patients responded normally in deoxyribonucleic acid synthesis and blast transformation to stimulation by phytohemagglutinin,10 responses considered to be indicative of the immunological competence of lymphocytes. Delayed hypersensitivity induced by 1-chloro-2, 4-dinitrobenzene, which is mediated by lymphocytes,