Viral exposures and MS outcome in a prospective cohort of children with acquired demyelination

Mult Scler. 2016 Mar;22(3):385-8. doi: 10.1177/1352458515595876. Epub 2015 Jul 21.


Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) infection is associated with increased multiple sclerosis (MS) risk. Recently, cytomegalovirus (CMV) infection has been proposed as a protective factor against MS development. We determined EBV, herpes simplex virus, varicella-zoster virus and CMV seroprevalence in 247 prospectively followed children with acquired demyelinating syndromes (ADS). Remote EBV infection was more common in children with MS than those with monophasic ADS while CMV infection was more common in children with monophasic ADS. Children displaying evidence of remote EBV without CMV infection were at highest risk of subsequent MS diagnosis. Viral infection repertoire detected at ADS provides important prognostic information.

Keywords: Epstein–Barr virus; Multiple sclerosis; cytomegalovirus; pediatric; risk factors.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Antibodies, Viral / blood
  • Chickenpox / complications
  • Chickenpox / epidemiology
  • Child
  • Cohort Studies
  • Cytomegalovirus Infections / complications
  • Cytomegalovirus Infections / epidemiology*
  • Demyelinating Diseases / virology*
  • Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay
  • Epstein-Barr Virus Infections / complications
  • Epstein-Barr Virus Infections / epidemiology*
  • Female
  • Herpes Simplex / complications
  • Herpes Simplex / epidemiology
  • Humans
  • Immunoglobulin G / blood
  • Male
  • Multiple Sclerosis / virology*
  • Proportional Hazards Models
  • Prospective Studies
  • Seroepidemiologic Studies


  • Antibodies, Viral
  • Immunoglobulin G