Measles IgM immunoreactivity in patients with inflammatory bowel disease.Ital J Gastroenterol Hepatol 1998; 30(4):378-82IJ
The purpose of our study was to examine measles IgM immunoreactivity in patients with inflammatory bowel disease.
PATIENTS AND METHODS
In an International collaborative study, serum measles IgM immunoreactivity was assayed in consecutive outpatients with Crohn's disease (n = 95), ulcerative colitis (n = 79), viral hepatitis (n = 63) and blood donors (n = 30). Two commercial measles assays--enzyme linked immunosorbent assay and indirect fluorescence assay--and a Public Health Laboratory Service (PHLS) "in house" antibody capture radioimmunoassay were used. Results were compared with serum rubella and Epstein-Barr virus-specific IgM immunoreactivity, total serum IgM, and measles IgG immunoreactivity. Twenty patients with inflammatory bowel disease were studied serially over a 4-month period.
By enzyme linked immunosorbent assay, the prevalence of raised serum measles IgM immunoreactivity was significantly greater in patients with Crohn's disease 23/95 (24%) and ulcerative colitis 20/79 (27%) compared with hepatitis patients 2/63 (3%) and normal controls 0/30 (0%) (p < 0.001). Indirect fluorescence assay produced significantly more positive results than enzyme linked immunosorbent assay in both Crohn's disease (50/87; 57%) and ulcerative colitis (35/68; 51%) but not in controls (0%) (p < 0.001). In contrast, no sera were positive using MCRIA. In the enzyme linked immunosorbent assay, measles IgM immunoreactivity did not correlate with either total IgM, rubella or Epstein-Barr virus IgM immunoreactivities-which were not raised-measles IgM immunoreactivity, or disease activity. Patients not receiving steroids were more likely to have raised measles IgM immunoreactivity (p < 0.5). All sera tested for Rheumatoid factor were negative. Of 20 patients with inflammatory bowel disease studied by ELISA over a 4-month period, 50% showed raised measles IgM immunoreactivity at some stage.
The data suggest a specific and fluctuating immune response to measles virus in patients with Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis, that may be modified by corticosteroid therapy.