Tropheryma whippelii DNA (Whipple’s disease), CSF


Intestinal lipodystrophy, now referred to as Whipple’s disease, is a fatal illness that causes pathological changes in the intestinal mucosa, mesenterium, heart, and lungs. Systemic symptoms such as low-grade intermittent fever, night sweats and lymphadenopathy are quite frequent in patients with Whipple’s disease. Other symptoms such as skin hyper-pigmentation, pulmonary, cardiac, skeletal muscle, and CNS involvement have also been described. The disease is caused by Tropheryma whippelii, a rod-shaped organisms closely resembling the tubercle bacillus. The disease predominantly affects caucasian males, with a male to female ratio of approximately 8:1 and a mean age of onset around 50 years.


Although Whipple’s disease is rare, physicians should always consider it in their differential diagnosis in a patient with weight loss, arthritis, chronic cough and fever since its clinical presentation may be so variable and since it may be lethal for some patients. Although CNS symptoms related to Whipple’s disease may be present in only 10-30% of patients, CNS lesions are found in over 90% of both symptomatic and asymptomatic patients.

Sample Type, Quantity & Conditions

1 ml CSF Room Temperature

Special Precautions

Normal Range


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