Serum antibodies from epileptic patients react, at high prevalence, with simian virus 40 mimotopes.
Eur J Neurol. 2015 May ;22(5):789-95, e51-2. Epub 2015 Jan 18. PMID: 25598431
BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: It has been demonstrated that inflammation may contribute to epileptogenesis and cause neuronal injury in epilepsy. In this study, the prevalence of antibodies to simian virus 40 (SV40), a kidney and neurotropic polyomavirus, was investigated in serum samples from 88 epileptic children/adolescents/young adults.
METHODS: Serum antibodies reacting to specific SV40 peptides were analysed by indirect enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Synthetic peptides corresponding to the epitopes of viral capsid proteins 1-3 were used as SV40 antigens.
RESULTS: A significantly higher prevalence of antibodies against SV40 was detected in sera from epileptic patients compared to controls (41% vs. 19%). Specifically, the highest significant difference was revealed in the cohort of patients from 1.1 to 10 years old (54% vs. 21%), with a peak in the sub-cohort of 3.1-6 years old (65% vs. 18%).
CONCLUSION: Our immunological data suggest a strong association between epilepsy and the SV40 infection.