Onconeural antibodies are found in many patients with paraneoplastic neurological syndromes (PNS) and define the disease as paraneoplastic. The study describes the presence of onconeural antibodies and PNS in 555 patients with neurological symptoms and confirmed cancer within five years, and compares the diagnostic accuracy of different antibody assays (immunoprecipitation, immunofluorescence and immunoblot). Onconeural antibodies were found in 11.9% of the patients by immunoprecipitation, in 7.0% by immunofluorescence and in 6.3% by immunoblot. PNS were present in 81.8% of the cancer patients that were seropositive by immunoprecipitation. Immunofluorescence and immunoblot failed to detect onconeural antibodies in almost one third of the PNS cases.
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