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Myasthenia - Yesterday and Today

Neugebauer A.,
Universität zu Köln, Zentrum für Augenheilkunde (Köln)

Since the first description in the 17th century the research history of myasthenia gravis reflects important chapters in the history of medicine: Clinical description, the evaluation of the pathological specimen, the discovery of biochemical interactions at the neuromuscular junction, specific pharmacotherapy, the introduction of electrophysiologic methods and at last the identification of the disease as a prototype of a human autoimmune disease. The immunopathophysiology of the disease that often manifests itself first on the extraocular muscles is described and new molecular concepts of the pathogenesis are described. The clinical picture, differential diagnosis and therapy are discussed.

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