Papers And Originals

Specific Laboratory Test for Diagnosis of Multiple Sclerosis

Br Med J 1974; 1 doi: (Published 09 March 1974) Cite this as: Br Med J 1974;1:412
  1. E. J. Field,
  2. B. K. Shenton,
  3. Greta Joyce


    Lymphocytes from patients with multiple sclerosis are much more susceptible to the inhibitory activity of linoleic acid (0·08 mg/ml) when tested for sensitization to thyroid by the macrophage electrophoretic mobility test (91% inhibition) than are those from normal subjects (57% inhibition). Cells from patients with a variety of other neurological diseases give 47% inhibition with linoleic acid. These differences are specific for multiple sclerosis and can be used as an in-vitro diagnostic test for the disease. Nearly 43% of clinically normal near relatives of patients with multiple sclerosis show an “anomalous” figure of about 77%; in the remainder the figure is the same as in the general population (57%). An anomalous result is compatible with lifelong freedom from M.S. Possibly a congenital anomalous handling of unsaturated fatty acids is a constant feature of the disease.