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ARTICLE |

HIV-Related Oligoclonal Paraproteinemia

Albert A. Keshgegian, MD, PhD
JAMA. 1987;257(7):927-928. doi:10.1001/jama.1987.03390070047014.
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To the Editor.—  Kouns et al1 recently reported the presence of oligoclonal banding in the serum of patients with antibody to the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). They state that such a finding is rare in other patients and suggest demonstration of oligoclonal banding as a surrogate test for HIV exposure.Although the association between oligoclonal banding and antibody to HIV is an interesting one, I do not believe that the authors' suggestion of oligoclonal banding as a diagnostic test is valid. Oligoclonal banding in serum is not rare. Small homogeneous bands in the γ-globulin region, often multiple, can be detected by high-resolution agarose gel electrophoresis in the serum of a substantial number of hospitalized patients.2 The bands occur most commonly (62%) in patients with an increased γ-globulin concentration and with an acute-phase response. The presence of such bands does not correlate with age, sex, or medical diagnosis; it

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