• June 23, 2024
The classification and pathological mechanisms of many central nervous system inflammatory diseases remain uncertain. In this article we report eight patients with a clinically and radiologically distinct pontine-predominant encephalomyelitis we have named 'chronic lymphocytic inflammation with pontine perivascular enhancement responsive to steroids' (CLIPPERS). The patients were assessed clinically, radiologically and pathologically at Mayo Clinic, USA and Ghent University Hospital, Belgium from 1999 to 2009. Median follow-up duration from clinical onset was 22 months (range 7-144 months). Patients underwent extensive laboratory (serum and cerebrospinal fluid), radiological and pathological testing (conjunctival, transbronchial and brain biopsies) to search for causes of an inflammatory central nervous system disorder. All eight patients (five female, three male) presented with episodic diplopia or facial paresthesias with subsequent brainstem and occasionally myelopathic symptoms and had a favourable initial response to high dose glucocorticosteroids. All patients had symmetric curvilinear gadolinium enhancement peppering the pons and extending variably into the medulla, brachium pontis, cerebellum, midbrain and occasionally spinal cord. Radiological improvement accompanied clinical response to glucocorticosteroids. Patients routinely worsened following glucocorticosteroid taper and required chronic glucocorticosteroid or other immunosuppressive therapy. Neuropathology of biopsy material from four patients demonstrated white matter perivascular, predominantly T lymphocytic, infiltrate without granulomas, infection, lymphoma or vasculitis. Chronic lymphocytic inflammation with pontine perivascular enhancement responsive to steroids is a definable, chronic inflammatory central nervous system disorder amenable to immunosuppressive treatment. The T cell predominant inflammatory pathology in affected central nervous system lesions and the clinical and radiological response to immunosuppressive therapies is consistent with an immune-mediated process.

Hepatitis B surface antigen levels during the natural history of chronic hepatitis B: a perspective on Asia

OBJECTIVE
Data from clinical trials suggest a potential role for on-treatment monitoring of serum HBsAg titres during interferon-alpha (pegIFN) therapy in predicting virological responses. However, baseline HBsAg titres during the natural history of chronic hepatitis B (CHB) have not been well-characterized. We aimed to define the serum HBsAg titres during the different phases of CHB in a cohort of Asian patients infected with either genotype B or C HBV.
METHODS
Two-hundred and twenty patients were classified into immune-tolerant (IT), immune-clearance (IC), non/low-replicative (LR) or hepatitis B e antigen negative hepatitis (ENH) phases. Serum HBsAg was quantified using the ARCHITECT platform (Abbott Laboratories, Chicago, USA). Correlation of HBsAg titre with HBV DNA and serum ALT within each phase of infection was performed.
RESULTS
Median HBsAg titres were different between each phase of CHB (p=0.001): IT (4.53 log(10)IU/ml), IC (4.03 log(10)IU/ml), LR (2.86 log(10)IU/ml), and ENH (3.35 log(10)IU/ml). HBsAg titres were highest in the IT phase, and lowest in the LR phase. In general, median HBsAg titres were similar between genotypes B and C HBV. Serum HBsAg titres only correlated with HBV viral load in the IC phase. No correlation between the serum HBsAg level and ALT was observed.
CONCLUSIONS
This study demonstrated significant differences in median baseline serum HBsAg titres across the different phases of CHB. These results provide further insight into the HBV viral life cycle in the setting of the various phases of CHB. Baseline HBsAg quantification may help refine future treatment algorithms for both immune-modulator therapy and oral nucleos(t)ide analogue therapy.

Chronic lymphocytic inflammation with pontine perivascular enhancement responsive to steroids (CLIPPERS)

 

The classification and pathological mechanisms of many central nervous system inflammatory diseases remain uncertain. In this article we report eight patients with a clinically and radiologically distinct pontine-predominant encephalomyelitis we have named ‘chronic lymphocytic inflammation with pontine perivascular enhancement responsive to steroids’ (CLIPPERS). The patients were assessed clinically, radiologically and pathologically at Mayo Clinic, USA and Ghent University Hospital, Belgium from 1999 to 2009. Median follow-up duration from clinical onset was 22 months (range 7-144 months).

The classification and pathological mechanisms of many central nervous system inflammatory diseases remain uncertain. In this article we report eight patients with a clinically and radiologically distinct pontine-predominant encephalomyelitis we have named 'chronic lymphocytic inflammation with pontine perivascular enhancement responsive to steroids' (CLIPPERS). The patients were assessed clinically, radiologically and pathologically at Mayo Clinic, USA and Ghent University Hospital, Belgium from 1999 to 2009. Median follow-up duration from clinical onset was 22 months (range 7-144 months). Patients underwent extensive laboratory (serum and cerebrospinal fluid), radiological and pathological testing (conjunctival, transbronchial and brain biopsies) to search for causes of an inflammatory central nervous system disorder. All eight patients (five female, three male) presented with episodic diplopia or facial paresthesias with subsequent brainstem and occasionally myelopathic symptoms and had a favourable initial response to high dose glucocorticosteroids. All patients had symmetric curvilinear gadolinium enhancement peppering the pons and extending variably into the medulla, brachium pontis, cerebellum, midbrain and occasionally spinal cord. Radiological improvement accompanied clinical response to glucocorticosteroids. Patients routinely worsened following glucocorticosteroid taper and required chronic glucocorticosteroid or other immunosuppressive therapy. Neuropathology of biopsy material from four patients demonstrated white matter perivascular, predominantly T lymphocytic, infiltrate without granulomas, infection, lymphoma or vasculitis. Chronic lymphocytic inflammation with pontine perivascular enhancement responsive to steroids is a definable, chronic inflammatory central nervous system disorder amenable to immunosuppressive treatment. The T cell predominant inflammatory pathology in affected central nervous system lesions and the clinical and radiological response to immunosuppressive therapies is consistent with an immune-mediated process.

Patients underwent extensive laboratory (serum and cerebrospinal fluid), radiological and pathological testing (conjunctival, transbronchial and brain biopsies) to search for causes of an inflammatory central nervous system disorder. All eight patients (five female, three male) presented with episodic diplopia or facial paresthesias with subsequent brainstem and occasionally myelopathic symptoms and had a favourable initial response to high dose glucocorticosteroids. All patients had symmetric curvilinear gadolinium enhancement peppering the pons and extending variably into the medulla, brachium pontis, cerebellum, midbrain and occasionally spinal cord. Radiological improvement accompanied clinical response to glucocorticosteroids. Patients routinely worsened following glucocorticosteroid taper and required chronic glucocorticosteroid or other immunosuppressive therapy.

Neuropathology of biopsy material from four patients demonstrated white matter perivascular, predominantly T lymphocytic, infiltrate without granulomas, infection, lymphoma or vasculitis. Chronic lymphocytic inflammation with pontine perivascular enhancement responsive to steroids is a definable, chronic inflammatory central nervous system disorder amenable to immunosuppressive treatment.
The T cell predominant inflammatory pathology in affected central nervous system lesions and the clinical and radiological response to immunosuppressive therapies is consistent with an immune-mediated process.

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