Chlamydophila pneumoniae infection of the central nervous system in patients with multiple sclerosis

J Neurol Neurosurg Psychiatry. 2004 Jan;75(1):152-4.


Background: Chlamydophila pneumoniae has been postulated as an aetiological agent in the pathophysiology of multiple sclerosis. Previous studies show conflicting results.

Objective: To investigate patients with multiple sclerosis and other neurological diseases for evidence of past or present infection with C pneumoniae.

Methods: 19 patients with multiple sclerosis and 29 with other neurological diseases were studied. Evidence was sought for past or present infection with C pneumoniae using polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and cell culture of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), and enzyme linked immunosorbent assay and microimmunofluorescence of serum.

Results: C pneumoniae was grown from the CSF of one patient with multiple sclerosis. PCR was negative in all cases. Anti-chlamydial antibodies were detected in the same proportion in each group.

Conclusions: This study does not support the theory of an association between C pneumoniae and multiple sclerosis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Antibodies, Bacterial / cerebrospinal fluid
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Chlamydophila Infections / complications*
  • Chlamydophila pneumoniae / immunology
  • Chlamydophila pneumoniae / isolation & purification
  • Chlamydophila pneumoniae / pathogenicity*
  • DNA, Bacterial
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Multiple Sclerosis / etiology*
  • Multiple Sclerosis / microbiology*
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction


  • Antibodies, Bacterial
  • DNA, Bacterial