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May 1982

Oligoclonal Bands in Myoclonus Epilepsy

Arch Neurol. 1982;39(5):321. doi:10.1001/archneur.1982.00510170063023

To the Editor.—  Iivanainen et al (Archives 1981;38:206-208) reported the presence of CSF oligoclonal bands in six of eight patients with progressive myoclonus epilepsy. However, in most, if not all, of the positive cases, the apparent oligoclonal pattern was identical, consisting of two bands, one with mid-γ mobility and the other with slow-γ mobility. These bands may in fact represent nonimmunoglobulin molecules, with no importance for oligoclonal banding. γ-Trace protein, a nonimmunoglobulin molecule, is commonly found in CSF and has a very characteristic slow-γ mobility on electrophoresis.1 Link2 has also described a mid-γ artifact that is sometimes seen on agarose electrophoresis; although its nature is unknown, it does not represent immunoglobulin.The term "oligoclonal" implies that several clones of immunoglobulin-producing cells are proliferating and secreting relatively large amounts of homogeneous immunoglobulin. Bands other than presumptive immunoglobulin do not have the same importance and should not be counted as

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