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Acta Neurol Scand. 2002 Dec;106(6):351-4.

Tau protein concentrations in cerebrospinal fluid of patients with multiple sclerosis.

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Department of Neurology Hospital Universitario Príncipe de Asturias, Universidad de Alcalá, Alcalá de Henares-Madrid, Spain.


FUNDAMENTALS AND OBJECTIVE: Multiple sclerosis (MS) is the prototype of demyelinating disease, but recently, it has been shown that the existence of axonal lesions contribute to irreversible central nervous system damage in this disease. Tau proteins are considered to be important for maintaining the stability of axonal microtubules involved in the mediation of fast axonal transport of synaptic constituents. There have been reports of increased cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) tau concentrations in patients with MS, and it has been suggested that this could be a marker of axonal damage. The objective of the present study was to elucidate whether CSF tau levels could be a marker of MS activity.


We measured tau concentrations in the CSF of 20 patients with MS (nine in the first, seven in the second, one in the fourth exacerbation, and three patients with chronic progressive course) and 32 age- and sex-matched controls, using a specific enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay method.


The CSF tau concentrations of patients with MS did not differ from those of controls, and they were not correlated with age at onset and duration of the disease.


CSF tau concentrations are not a marker of MS activity.

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