Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) and serum IgG and IgM antibodies to seven gangliosides were determined in patients with neuroborreliosis (NB) (n = 20), Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS) (n = 13), and chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyradiculoneuropathy (CIDP) (n = 10). The incidence of elevated antibodies was highest in NB and lowest in CIDP. Correlation between CSF and serum antibodies was only observed for IgG antibodies to GM1, GD1b and GT1b in GBS. The strong IgM antibody reactivity to gangliosides in the CSF of NB patients may be involved in the variety of neurological disorders attributed to Borrelia burgdorferi infection. Since one CIDP and three GBS patients had serologic evidence of prior or concurrent borrelia infection, this infection may belong to the infections that can trigger GBS or CIDP. The lack of specific ganglioside antibody patterns in these four patients suggests that ganglioside antibodies are not the link between Borrelia burgdorferi infection and the demyelination of peripheral nerves in GBS and CIDP.
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