Monoclonal antibodies are given that deplete all lymphoid cells, only B cells, or only T cells. A recent and somewhat surprising development is the successful use of anti-CD20 antibody (rituximab), which depletes only B cells, to treat diseases that were thought to be caused primarily by T cell-mediated inflammation. This treatment has shown efficacy in some patients with rheumatoid arthritis and multiple sclerosis. Plasmapheresis has been used to eliminate circulating autoantibodies and immune complexes.
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