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CASPR2 autoimmunity in children expanding to mild encephalopathy with hypertension


Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To delineate autoimmune disease in association with contactin-associated protein 2 (CASPR2) antibodies in childhood, we reviewed the clinical phenotype of children with CASPR2 antibodies.

METHODS

Retrospective assessment of patients recruited through laboratories specialized in autoimmune CNS disease.

RESULTS

Ten children with serum CASPR2 antibodies were identified (age at manifestation 18 months to 17 years). Eight children with CASPR2 antibody titers from ≥1:160 to 1:5,120 had complex autoimmune diseases with an age-dependent clinical phenotype. Two children with structural epilepsy due to CNS malformations harbored nonspecific low-titer CASPR2 antibodies (serum titers 1:80). The clinical symptoms of the 8 children with high-titer CASPR2 antibodies were general weakness (8/8), sleep dysregulation (8/8), dysautonomia (8/8) encephalopathy (7/8), neuropathic pain (7/8), neuromyotonia (3/8), and flaccid paresis (3/8). Adolescents (3/8) showed pain, neuromyotonia, and encephalopathy, whereas younger children (5/8) displayed severe hypertension, encephalopathy, and hormonal dysfunction mimicking a systemic disease. No tumors were identified. Motor symptoms remitted with immunotherapy. Mild behavioral changes persisted in 1 child, and autism spectrum disorder was diagnosed during follow-up in a young boy.

CONCLUSION

High-titer CASPR2 antibodies are associated with Morvan syndrome in children as young as 2 years. However, CASPR2 autoimmunity mimics systemic disease and hypertensive encephalopathy in children younger than 7 years. The outcome following immunotherapy was mostly favorable; long-term behavioral impairment may occur in younger children.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To delineate autoimmune disease in association with contactin-associated protein 2 (CASPR2) antibodies in childhood, we reviewed the clinical phenotype of children with CASPR2 antibodies.

METHODS

Retrospective assessment of patients recruited through laboratories specialized in autoimmune CNS disease.

RESULTS

Ten children with serum CASPR2 antibodies were identified (age at manifestation 18 months to 17 years). Eight children with CASPR2 antibody titers from ≥1:160 to 1:5,120 had complex autoimmune diseases with an age-dependent clinical phenotype. Two children with structural epilepsy due to CNS malformations harbored nonspecific low-titer CASPR2 antibodies (serum titers 1:80). The clinical symptoms of the 8 children with high-titer CASPR2 antibodies were general weakness (8/8), sleep dysregulation (8/8), dysautonomia (8/8) encephalopathy (7/8), neuropathic pain (7/8), neuromyotonia (3/8), and flaccid paresis (3/8). Adolescents (3/8) showed pain, neuromyotonia, and encephalopathy, whereas younger children (5/8) displayed severe hypertension, encephalopathy, and hormonal dysfunction mimicking a systemic disease. No tumors were identified. Motor symptoms remitted with immunotherapy. Mild behavioral changes persisted in 1 child, and autism spectrum disorder was diagnosed during follow-up in a young boy.

CONCLUSION

High-titer CASPR2 antibodies are associated with Morvan syndrome in children as young as 2 years. However, CASPR2 autoimmunity mimics systemic disease and hypertensive encephalopathy in children younger than 7 years. The outcome following immunotherapy was mostly favorable; long-term behavioral impairment may occur in younger children.

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3 citations in Scopus®
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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > University Children's Hospital Zurich > Medical Clinic
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Scopus Subject Areas:Health Sciences > Neurology (clinical)
Language:English
Date:2 June 2020
Deposited On:03 Feb 2021 13:05
Last Modified:04 Feb 2021 21:00
Publisher:Lippincott Williams & Wilkins
ISSN:0028-3878
OA Status:Closed
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1212/WNL.0000000000009523
PubMed ID:32424051

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