Research Article

Lymphocytic infiltration of the brain in sleeping sickness.

Br Med J 1976; 2 doi: (Published 27 November 1976) Cite this as: Br Med J 1976;2:1291
  1. B M Greenwood,
  2. H C Whittle,
  3. K O Oduloju,
  4. R R Dourmashkin


    Cerebrospinal fluid mononuclear cells from 40 patients with advanced Gambian sleeping sickness were examined for intracytoplasmic immunoglobulin and for B- and T-lymphocyte markers. About 5% of mononuclear cells were plasma cells. Most of the lymphocytes present were B cells. These findings suggest that the considerable lymphocytic infiltration of the nervous system seen in advanced sleeping sickness is not a cell-mediated immune reaction to trypanosomes. Immune complexes may play a part in producing the brain damage characteristic of this disease.