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February 1974

Epstein–Barr Virus Antibodies in the Cerebrospinal FluidA Case of Infectious Mononucleosis With Encephalitis

Am J Dis Child. 1974;127(2):282-285. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1974.02110210132021

The presence of Epstein-Barr virus (EBV)-viral capsid antigen (EBV-VCA) antibodies at the 1/2 and 1/5 dilution could be detected in the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) and in the serum at the 1/160 dilution by indirect immunofluorescence in a patient with infectious mononucleosis with encephalitis. To our knowledge, this is the first report of EBV antibodies in the CSF. Epstein-Barr virus antibodies could not be detected in any of 45 samples of CSF from patients with a variety of neurological diseases, four of whom had serum EBV antibody titers of 1/160 or more. Specific antibodies could only be found in the CSF in cases of subacute sclerosing panencephalitis (measles antibodies) and herpes encephalitis (herpes simplex antibodies) in addition to the present case; this suggests a potential use of these CSF antibody tests in the diagnosis of a few neurological disorders of infectious or post-infectious origin.