Cases reported "Prion Diseases"

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1/44. Stealth virus epidemic in the Mohave Valley: severe vacuolating encephalopathy in a child presenting with a behavioral disorder.

    An infectious illness, attributed to atypically structured cytopathic "stealth" viruses, occurred in 1996 in the Mohave Valley region of the united states. A stealth virus-infected child from this region has developed a severe noninflammatory, vacuolating (spongiform) en cephalopathy. The illness initially presented as a behavioral problem without overt neurological signs. Extensive investigations, including repeated magnetic resonance imaging, two brain biopsies, and stealth virus cultures, have helped define the disease process occurring in this child. Significant clinical benefit with apparent retardation of disease progression occurred during a 6-week course of ganciclovir therapy. The potential contributing role of stealth virus infections in children presenting with behavioral problems needs to be addressed. ( info)

2/44. A subtype of sporadic prion disease mimicking fatal familial insomnia.

    OBJECTIVE: To establish a variant of sporadic prion disease as the sporadic form of fatal familial insomnia (FFI). BACKGROUND: FFI is a recently described prion disease characterized clinically by severe sleep impairment, dysautonomia, and motor signs, and pathologically by atrophy of thalamic nuclei, especially the medial dorsal and anterior ventral, and of the inferior olive. FFI is linked to the D178N mutation coupled with the methionine codon at position 129 in the prion protein gene (PRNP). It is also identified by the properties of the abnormal prion protein (PrP(Sc)), which has the relative molecular mass of 19 kDa, corresponding to the so-called type 2, and a marked underrepresentation of the unglycosylated form relative to the diglycosylated and monoglycosylated forms. methods: Clinical, pathologic, PrP(Sc), and PRNP data from 5 subjects with a sporadic prion disease phenotypically similar to FFI were collected and analyzed. RESULTS: All 5 subjects had a disease clinically similar and histopathologically virtually identical to FFI. PrP(Sc) type 2 was present in all subjects in amount and distribution similar to those of FFI. However, the PrP(Sc) did not show the striking underrepresentation of the unglycosylated isoform of the protein that is characteristic of FFI. Moreover, none of the subjects had the D178N PRNP mutation but all were homozygous for methionine at codon 129. CONCLUSION: This condition is likely to represent the sporadic form of FFI and the term "sporadic fatal insomnia" is proposed. ( info)

3/44. An inherited prion disease with a PrP P105L mutation: clinicopathologic and PrP heterogeneity.

    OBJECTIVE: To clarify a clinical and neuropathologic phenotype of an inherited prion disease associated with a missense mutation at codon 105 in the prion protein (PrP) gene that was originally described as a variant of gerstmann-straussler-scheinker disease demonstrating spastic paraparesis. methods: Two siblings from a Japanese family are described. PrP gene analyses, neuropathologic studies with immunohistochemistry, and Western blot analysis of the PrP were performed. RESULTS: Both patients showed a missense (proline-->leucine) mutation at codon 105 and a methionine/valine polymorphism at codon 129 of the PrP gene. Clinically, Patient 1 presented with progressive spastic paraparesis, ataxia, and dementia. Patient 2, the sister of Patient 1, showed prominent action myoclonus and dementia. Neuropathologically, multiple PrP-positive amyloid plaques and diffuse PrP deposition in the deep cortical layers were found in the cerebral cortex with primarily frontal dominant atrophy in both patients. Tau-positive pathologic structures including neurofibrillary tangles, neuropil threads, and dystrophic neurites around the plaques were abundant in the brain of Patient 2. In contrast, the tau pathology was scarce in Patient 1. Western blot analysis of the brain showed different patterns of detergent-insoluble PrP fragments between the patients. CONCLUSIONS: Despite the identical codon 105 mutation and codon 129 polymorphism of the PrP gene, remarkable clinical and neuropathologic differences, and PrP heterogeneity were present between the affected siblings. The phenotypic variability might be related to PrP heterogeneity. ( info)

4/44. Inherited prion disease with an alanine to valine mutation at codon 117 in the prion protein gene.

    A large English family with autosomal dominant segregation of presenile dementia, ataxia and other neuropsychiatric features is described. Diagnoses of demyelinating disease, Alzheimer's disease, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD) and Gerstmann-Straussler-Scheinker syndrome have been attributed to particular individuals at different times. An Irish family, likely to be part of the same kindred, is also described, in which diagnoses of multiple sclerosis, dementia, corticobasal degeneration and new variant CJD have been considered in affected individuals. Molecular genetic studies have enabled the classification of this disease at the molecular level as one of the group of inherited prion diseases, with the substitution of valine for alanine at codon 117 of the prion protein gene (PRNP). Only three other kindreds have been described world-wide with this mutation and only limited phenotypic information has been reported. Here we describe the phenotypic spectrum of inherited prion disease (PrPA117V). The diversity of phenotypic expression seen in this kindred emphasizes the logic of molecular classification of the inherited prion diseases rather than classification by specific clinicopathological syndrome. Indeed, inherited prion disease should be excluded by PRNP analysis in any individual presenting with atypical presenile dementia or neuropsychiatric features and ataxia, including suspected cases of new variant CJD. ( info)

5/44. Novel twelve-generation kindred of fatal familial insomnia from germany representing the entire spectrum of disease expression.

    We present a novel large German kindred of fatal familial insomnia (FFI) consisting of three branches and comprising more than 800 individuals of 12 generations, the largest pedigree of any familial prion disease known today. There is a wide spectrum of clinical presentations leading to misdiagnoses of Olivo-Ponto-Cerebellar atrophy (OPCA), Parkinson's or Alzheimer's disease in addition to Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD) and Gerstmann-Straussler-Scheinker (GSS) syndrome. Molecular genetic analysis of the prion protein gene (PRNP) confirmed the mutation D178N segregating with methionine at the polymorphic codon 129 of PRNP in all 7 patients examined. This polymorphism at codon 129 is supposed to discriminate between familial CJD (fCJD) and FFI; the 129M allele determines FFI and 129V fCJD. Furthermore, heterozygosity at this site appears to induce prolonged disease duration as compared to the homozygous condition. The variability of the clinical and pathological findings documented for our patients indicates the difficulty in establishing the diagnosis of FFI on clinical and on pathological grounds alone. In three cases (IX-97, XI-21, V-2) followed up by us prospectively insomnia was an early and severe symptom; however, in case notes analyzed retrospectively this symptom was frequently missed. In contrast to previous reports and in agreement with recent studies we cannot confirm a clear relationship between the status of the M/V polymorphism at codon 129 and the age-of-onset of this disease. ( info)

6/44. Fatal familial insomnia: clinical, neuropathological, and genetic description of a Spanish family.

    The clinical presentation and evolution, neuropathological findings, and genotyping of three members of a Spanish family affected with fatal familial insomnia are reported. The mother and two of her offspring developed a rapidly evolving disease with insomnia and behavioural disorders as the initial symptoms and died between 5 and 10 months after the onset of the illness. Frontal brain biopsy in the mother disclosed only non-significant spongiosis, and full neuropathological examination of her offspring showed thalamic and olivary degeneration with isolated focal cortical spongiosis. Genetic examination could only be performed in the contemporary patients and both harboured the prion protein (PrP) 178Asn mutation and homozygous 129 Met/Met genotype. ( info)

7/44. Inherited prion encephalopathy associated with the novel PRNP H187R mutation: a clinical study.

    OBJECTIVE: To describe a variant of prion encephalopathy associated with the recently identified H187R mutation in the prion protein (PRNP) gene. methods: The authors studied a multigenerational American family with nine affected individuals. Clinical examination included imaging, EEG, and CSF analysis with 14-3-3 protein testing. Histopathology was characterized by examination of a brain biopsy from an H187R mutation-positive patient. RESULTS: The disease in this family is caused by the PRNP H187R mutation and characterized by autosomal dominant inheritance, median age at disease onset of 42 years (range 33 to 50 years), and median duration of illness of 12 years (range 8 to 19 years). Clinical signs include progressive dementia, ataxia, myoclonus, and seizures. Histopathologic features consist of distinctive "curly" prion protein deposits with a strictly laminar distribution in the cerebral cortex and minimal astrogliosis in the absence of amyloid plaques or spongiosis. CONCLUSION: A variant of prion encephalopathy associated with the novel H187R mutation in the PRNP gene displays distinctive clinical and immunostaining characteristics that further expand the boundaries of human prion disease. ( info)

8/44. Post-transplant lymphoproliferative disorder after autologous peripheral stem cell transplantation in a pediatric patient.

    Post-transplant lymphoproliferative disorder (PTLD) is a complication of allogeneic bone marrow transplantation (BMT). Rare cases of PTLD after autologous BMT have been reported only in adults. This case report is the first to describe PTLD in a pediatric patient after autologous peripheral stem cell transplantation (PSCT). This 2-year-old male with stage IV neuroblastoma underwent autologous PSCT. The post-PSCT course was complicated by fever with hematochezia and a lung mass. On day 94 post PSCT, colonoscopy revealed an ulcer due to a PTLD, monomorphic type, B cell phenotype, associated with Epstein-Barr virus. Fine needle aspiration identified the lung mass as neuroblastoma. PTLD can occur in pediatric autologous PSCT recipients, and may occur more frequently in autologous grafts manipulated by T cell depletion or CD34 cell selection. ( info)

9/44. Inherited prion disease with A117V mutation of the prion protein gene: a novel Hungarian family.

    Three members of a family with inherited prion disease are reported. One additional family member had a progressive neurological disease without details. Two developed symptoms of ataxia, dementia, myoclonus, rigidity, and hemiparesis, and one had a different phenotype with the combination of lower motor neuron deficit, parkinsonism, intellectual decline, and ataxia. In this last patient cell loss of the anterior horn motor neurons and chronic neurogenic muscle atrophy was evident. Immunostaining for the prion protein disclosed unicentric and multicentric plaques, and coarse and fine granular positivity. Genetic analysis of the prion protein gene of the propositus showed a 117 codon alanine to valine mutation and homozygous 129 valine/valine genotype. ( info)

10/44. Inherited prion disease caused by the V210I mutation: transmission to transgenic mice.

    OBJECTIVE: To describe the clinical and neuropathologic profile and determine the strain characteristics of familial Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (fCJD) caused by a point mutation of the PRNP gene at codon 210 that results in a valine-to-isoleucine substitution in the prion protein (PrP). methods: The clinicopathologic features of four individuals from the united states who died of fCJD(V210I) were compared. Transgenic (Tg) mice expressing a chimeric human-mouse PrP transgene were inoculated with brain extracts from three fCJD(V210I) cases, sporadic CJD (sCJD), fCJD(E200K), and fatal familial insomnia (FFI), to compare prion strain characteristics. RESULTS: The clinicopathologic profile of fCJD(V210I) was variable among cases but shared similarities with sCJD. The pattern of PrP(Sc) deposition in the brains of Tg mice was similar to that caused by sCJD but different from that associated with fCJD(E200K) or FFI. CONCLUSIONS: Each of these prion diseases is characterized by a rapidly progressive dementia with myoclonus, periodic complexes on EEG, and spongiform change without PrP plaque deposition in the brain. The occurrence of a different PrP(Sc) phenotype with each PRNP mutation argues that each respective amino acid sequence substitution produces a different prion strain. ( info)
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