Sex-Related Differences in Cerebrospinal Fluid Plasma-Derived Proteins of Neurological Patients
and aims: Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) protein content presents a sexual dimorphism in humans. We investigated sex-related differences in CSF IgG levels and in the quantification of intrathecal IgG synthesis (IIS). Methods: CSF, serum albumin and IgG were measured in 1519 neurological patients and both linear and hyperbolic formulas were used for the quantification of IIS. CSF-restricted oligoclonal IgG bands (OCBs) were used as "gold standard". Results: The linear IgG Index showed a weak
... wed a weak agreement with OCBs in males and females (k = 0.559, k = 0.587, respectively), while the hyperbolic Reiber's formulas had a moderate agreement with OCBs in females (k = 0.635) and a weak agreement in males (k = 0.565). Higher CSF albumin and IgG levels were found in men than in women in the whole population and in subjects without IIS after adjusting for age and for serum concentrations of albumin and IgG, respectively (Quade statistics, p < 0.000001). CSF and serum albumin and IgG levels positively correlated to age in both sexes. CSF total protein content did not correlate with CSF leukocyte numbers but was higher in patients with marked pleocytosis. Conclusions: In neurological patients, men have higher levels of CSF serum-derived proteins, such as albumin and IgG.