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Neuromyelitis optica

Item Type:Article
Title:Neuromyelitis optica
Creators Name:Pache, F. and Wildemann, B. and Paul, F. and Jarius, S.
Abstract:Neuromyelitis optica (NMO) is an autoimmune disorder of the central nervous system (CNS), that predominantly affects the spinal cord and optic nerves. The neuropathologic hallmarks comprise deposits of antibodies and complement as well as loss of astrocytes, secondary degeneration of oligodendrocytes and neurons, and necrotic lesions with infiltration of neutrophilic and eosinophilic granulocytes. Pathognomonic serum autoantibodies against aquaporin-4 (AQP4-IgG, also termed NMO-IgG) are detectable in around 80 % of NMO patients and help to distinguish this rare entity from multiple sclerosis. The target antigen of NMO-IgG, the water channel protein AQP4, is ubiquitously expressed within the CNS and, as a component of the blood-brain barrier, highly concentrated in the endfeet of astrocytes. New international consensus criteria for NMO spectrum disorders, published in 2015, allow earlier diagnosis. Besides the two index manifestations, optic neuritis and transverse myelitis, involvement of the brainstem and diencephalon is relatively common in NMO. Inflammatory lesions of the area postrema typically cause intractable nausea and vomiting and/or hiccups. NMO mostly follows a relapsing course, especially in AQP4-IgG-positive cases. The treatment of acute exacerbations comprises intravenous methylprednisolone pulses and/or plasma exchange, and prevention of attacks requires long-term therapy with immunosuppressants and/or B-cell-depleting monoclonal antibodies.
Keywords:Neuromyelitis Optica, Autoimmune Disorder, Myelitis, Optic Nerve, Aquaporin-4
Source:Fortschritte der Neurologie Psychiatrie
Page Range:100-114
Date:February 2017
Additional Information:Erratum in: Fortschr Neurol Psychiatr 85(2): e1.
Official Publication:https://doi.org/10.1055/s-0042-124186
PubMed:View item in PubMed

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