In neurodegeneration, accumulation of aggregated protein results in the formation of inclusion bodies, which is a pathological hallmark of the diseases. There are various forms of aggregates; from oligomers to filaments and to inclusion bodies, of which small species such as oligomers are considered to be more toxic compared to tightly packed inclusion bodies. In vitro experiments show that artificial inclusion bodies called aggresomes are generated with motor proteins and microtubules, which represents cellular effort to manage aggregated proteins. We showed that the aggresomes are formed in order to concentrate autophagy components and aggregates in order to give specificity to autophagy against aggregated proteins, thus facilitating their selective degradation.
Involvement of cranial nerves caused by cranial base lesions manifests diverse symptoms according to the localization of lesions. These localization-related symptoms are classified into syndromes such as orbital apex syndrome, cavernous sinus syndrome, and jugular foramen syndrome. Since the lesions may have various etiologies including infection, inflammation and tumor, etiological diagnosis should be performed simultaneously if possible. However, previous reports have described poor and/or fatal outcome following inappropriate treatment mainly due to difficulties in making a definitive pathological diagnosis. Nineteen patients with multiple cranial nerve involvement caused by skull base lesions were enrolled over the past 12 years. The patients were divided into an “infectious" group (n=11) and a “noninfectious" group (n=8) based on the final diagnosis. Chi-square analysis was conducted to examine the sensitivity and specificity of various factors including patient characteristics, clinical course and treatment response in infectious and noninfectious groups. Consequently, we identified some patients with good outcome irrespective of infectious or noninfectious etiology, even though a pathological diagnosis was not reached before the initial treatment. These patients with good outcome consistently received antifungal therapy in the early stage if infectious etiologies were suspected. We recommend conducting diagnostic therapy with antifungal drugs in patients with skull base lesions of unknown origin although infection cannot be excluded, when a pathological diagnosis is difficult due to various patient conditions.
A 59-year-old man (case 1) with multiple sclerosis (MS) presented with shortness of breath and general fatigue. He had been treated using interferon β-1b (IFNβ-1b) since he was 51 years of age. Laboratory test results showed hypoproteinemia and hypoalbuminemia, proteinuria, and absence of hematuria. He was diagnosed with nephrotic syndrome, and the administration of IFNβ-1b was stopped. Percutaneous renal biopsy was performed, and the histology revealed membranous nephropathy. A 33-year-old woman (case 2) with MS, who had been treated using IFNβ-1b for 7 years, was diagnosed with proteinuria during a medical checkup. She was referred to a nephrologist and was found to have hypoalbuminemia and proteinuria. A diagnosis of nephrotic syndrome was made, and IFNβ-1b therapy was stopped. The patient underwent percutaneous renal biopsy, and the histology revealed membranous nephropathy. Both patients were treated using intravenous methylprednisolone followed by oral prednisolone. Case 1 was administered ciclosporin orally, and his clinical symptoms and laboratory test results improved at first, but his laboratory test results subsequently showed recurrence of proteinuria. Case 2 was administered mizoribine orally, resulting in improvement in clinical symptoms and laboratory test results. Case 2 showed relapse of multiple sclerosis, but the symptoms were mild and were alleviated after steroid therapy. IFNβ therapy has several complications including nephropathy. Previously, several cases of nephrotic syndrome associated with IFNβ within 2 years of therapy were reported, but drug-induced nephropathy could appear after several years of the therapy as our cases. We should pay attention to nephrotic syndrome under using long-term IFNβ.
A 58-year-old man noticed left hemiparesis at 01:00 pm on a particular day in March 2006. Because his symptoms developed gradually, he was referred to the emergency room of our hospital at 05:00 pm and was admitted with the diagnosis of cerebral infarction. While he presented slight left hemiparesis involving the face, impairment of sensation was not apparent. Diffusion-weighted magnetic resonance imaging of the head showed a high-intensity area in the ventromedial area in the right thalamus. The patient was treated with anticoagulant and edaravone, and his symptoms resolved on hospital day 3. When he began eating, he noticed that he was unable to distinguish tastes. On day 5, we performed taste examination using a commercial kit. The taste sensation on both sides of his tongue was severely affected, while the touch sensations in the mouth and olfaction were preserved. His symptoms improved spontaneously and resolved on hospital day 15. This is the second case report of bilateral ageusia caused by right thalamic infarction. Our study indicates the importance of the right thalamus in taste sensation involving both sides of the tongue.
We have created an IT network with a chat feature and have provided at-home medical care to one ALS patient through hospital-home cooperation. The IT network was operated by staff involved in hospital and at-home medical care, who recorded the details of the medical care they provided in the chat server installed at the University of Fukui Hospital via cellular phones or personal computers. During the 51-day operating period of the network, information was entered 118 times; all staff could browse this information. Hospital staff supported home medical care staff by sending replies to the questions of home staff. This experience suggested that the use of the IT network could increase the level of contribution by neurology specialists in home medical care.
A cervical retro-odontoid pseudo-tumor, which is considered as a reactive fibrocartilaginous mass, is a rare condition in cervical myelopathy. A 63-year-old male, with repeated neck axial movements by a long-term leisure-time cycling, developed subacute myelopathy. Cervical MRI showed a mass lesion at the retro-odontoid region, compressing to the upper spinal cord. After detailed systemic and local examinations that ruled out primary or metastatic malignancy and inflammatory disorders such as rheumatoid arthritis or chronic kidney diseases, a retro-odontoid pseudo-tumor was diagnosed clinically. The patient underwent posterior C1-laminectomy without tumor resection and its pathological confirmation. After the surgery, his neurological signs of cervical myelopathy improved, and a follow-up MRI one year later showed a mild reduction of the tumor size. The neuro-physicians should recognize the relatively benign pseudotumor in cervical myelopathy, because the tumor size usually shows no further enlargement or regression only after decompression surgery without tumor resection.
Endogenous endophthalmitis may be a rare condition in acute meningo-encephalitis. A 69-year-old compromised adult abruptly developed septic bacteremia and meningo-encephalitis by Klebsiella pneumoniae. After an improvement from initial conscious disturbance and systemic inflammatory unstable vital conditions by treatment of intensive antibiotic medications, severe unilateral endogenous endophthalmitis with impaired visual acuity was diagnosed by detailed ophthalmological assessments and it deteriorated rapidly. After early vitreous surgery with anti-biotic direct injection, the patient successfully regained visual acuity of 20/200. Among the organisms of endogenous bacterial endophthalmitis, Klebsiella pneumoniae is the worst pathogen mostly resulting in vision loss or enucleation despite any aggressive treatments. The neuro-physicians should recognize the presence of refractory endophthalmitis by Klebsiella pneumoniae, even if clinically asymptomatic, because prompt ophthalmologic diagnosis and managements may improve the outcome.
We report an 87-year-old female patient who presented a dropped head and progressive weakness in proximal muscles over five months. The value of serum creatine kinase was 2,708 IU/l and the antibody against signal recognition particle (SRP) was detected by means of immunoprecipitation. The computed tomography of skeletal muscles revealed atrophy and fatty degeneration preferentially in the neck extensors and paraspinal muscles. The biopsied specimen of the deltoid muscle showed necrotic fibers scattered in fascicles with marked myophagia. The mononuclear cells in necrotic fibers were positive against CD68, leading to the diagnosis of immune-mediated necrotizing myopathy. We hypothesize that a group of patients with necrotizing myopathy can present a preferential involvement in neck extensors resulting in dropped head syndrome.
A case of a small left pontine tegmental hemorrhage that presented as cheiro-oral syndrome with a bilateral perioral sensory disturbance is described. An 83-year-old man suddenly developed numbness in his bilateral perioral area and right hand. Head CT and MRI (T2*-weighted image) revealed a small left pontine tegmental hemorrhage. The patient was diagnosed as having cheiro-oral syndrome with bilateral perioral sensory disturbance, probably due to unilateral pontine tegmental hemorrhage. All residual symptoms disappeared within a month. In the present case, the following clinicopathological hypothesis was considered. The hematoma located in the left pontine tegmentum impaired the sensory fibers from the contralateral medial lemniscus (from the right hand) and the ventral trigeminothalamic tract (from the right perioral region). In addition, the ipsilateral trigeminothalamic tract (from the left perioral region) was also impaired. It is important to know that a small unilateral lesion in the brainstem (especially the pons) can cause cheiro-oral syndrome with a bilateral perioral sensory disturbance, and a small brainstem hematoma is the most frequent etiology of this disease.
A 51-year-old woman was admitted to our hospital because of the right ear fullness and orthostatic headache. Based on the findings of low cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) pressure and detected images of CSF leakage by MRI myelography and radionuclide cisternography, she was diagnosed as having spontaneous intracranial hypotension (SIH). Audiograms in the supine and sitting positions showed a marked hearing loss of low-frequencies and its exacerbation after the sitting. After she was treated with bed rest, hydration and epidural blood patch, hearing loss with positional changes gradually improved. In conclusion, non-invasive examinations with audiogram in the supine and sitting positions could be useful in the diagnosis of SIH and the evaluation of therapeutic efficacy of hearing loss.