Background: Although many lines of evidence suggest an autoimmune etiology, the pathophysiology of opsoclonus-myoclonus syndrome (OMS) remains poorly understood and no immunologic abnormalities have correlated with neurologic severity. Conventional immunotherapies often do not prevent relapse or permanent sequelae. Objective: To test the cellular immune hypothesis of OMS in a cross-sectional study and determine if CSF lymphocyte subset analysis provides biomarkers of disease activity. Methods: The expression of lymphocyte surface antigens was investigated in CSF and blood of 36 children with OMS and 18 control subjects, using a comprehensive panel of monoclonal antibodies to adhesion and activation proteins in combination with anti-CD3 and anti-CD45 antibodies in four-color fluorescence-activated cell sorting. Results: Although most children with OMS had normal CSF cell counts, they exhibited expansion of CD19+ B-cell (up to 29%) and γδ T-cell (up to 26%) subsets and a lower percentage of CD4+ T-cells and CD4/CD8 ratio, which persisted even years after disease onset and conventional treatments. The percentage of activated CSF T-cells was also higher. Abnormalities correlated with neurologic severity, as scored blinded from videotapes using a 12-item motor scale, and disease duration. No significant differences were found between tumor and no-tumor groups. In children with neuroblastoma, tumor resection or cancer chemotherapy did not alter immunologic abnormalities. Conclusions: CSF B- and T-cell recruitment is linked to neurologic signs in pediatric OMS, which may relate to relapses and disease progression.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Neurology