Cloning the antibody response in humans with chronic inflammatory disease: Immunopanning of subacute sclerosing panencephalitis (sspe) brain sections with antibody phage libraries prepared from sspe brain enriches for antibody recognizing measles virus antigens in situ
In central nervous system (CNS) infectious and inflammatory diseases of known cause, oligoclonal bands represent antibody directed against the causative agent. To determine whether disease-relevant antibodies can be cloned from diseased brain, we prepared an antibody phage display library from the brain of a human with subacute sclerosing panencephalitis (SSPE), a chronic encephalitis caused by measles virus, and selected the library against SSPE brain sections. Antibodies that were retrieved reacted strongly with measles virus cell extracts by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay and were specific for the measles virus nucleocapsid protein. These antibodies immunostained cells in different SSPE brains but not in control brain. Our data provide the first demonstration that diseased brain can be used to select in situ for antibodies directed against the causative agent of disease and point to the potential usefulness of this approach in identifying relevant antibodies in chronic CNS or systemic inflammatory diseases of unknown cause.