Intrathecal interferon in subacute sclerosing panencephalitis

Peter R. Huttenlocher, Daniel L. Picchietti, Raymond P. Roos, Neil R. Cashman, Bernard Horowitz, Marilyn S. Horowitz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Five patients with clinically advanced subacute sclerosing panencephalitis (SSPE) were given human leukocyte interferon (IFN) by the lumbar route, 1 million IU every other day for a total of 30 days. Intrathecal IFN produced a meningeal inflammatory reaction in all patients and was associated with transient hemiparesis in 1. It persisted in the cerebrospinal fluid at measurable levels for 48 hours after a single injection. Although improvement was temporally related to intrathecal IFN in 1 patient, it is not clear whether this was induced by IFN or a spontaneous remission. A randomized controlled trial would be necessary to evaluate IFN critically as a therapy for SSPE.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)303-305
Number of pages3
JournalAnnals of Neurology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1986
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology


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