Epilepsy is one of the most common primary brain disorders. Nonparaneoplastic autoimmune encephalitis is increasingly recognized as an important cause of adult onset epilepsy. However, only in rare cases an initiating factor of the syndrome can be identified. Autoantibody detection after central nervous herpesvirus infection indicates a postviral etiology in a subgroup of patients. In order to analyze a possible underrecognition of postinfectious autoimmunity we performed a large-scale analysis of herpesvirus DNA in cerebrospinal fluid samples from patients with clinical signs of autoimmune encephalitis.

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