People with myasthenia gravis will often be told that they express autoantibodies – but what are the different types and what does it mean? This page goes over what might be found in a diagnostic blood test.

Myasthenia gravis (MG) is caused by antibodies binding to receptors on our muscle cells, causing them to not function as strongly.

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For around 5% of MG patients, they will express autoantibodies for muscle-specific kinase (MuSK). Azathioprine are more commonly used to treat this specific type of MG.

The remaining 10% of patients do not test for autoantibodies for AChR and are referred to as seronegative. Around 2% of these patients express autoantibodies for low-density lipoprotein receptor-related protein (LRP4).

A patient who is seronegative has (as of yet) undetected autoantibodies, this does not mean the autoantibodies aren’t there. As research identifies new autoantibodies, this will hopefully allow detection for all myasthenia gravis patients.

If you have questions regarding the content of this page, please contact Charlotte Campbell: [email protected]

Find out more about the different types of myasthenia.