Association between neurosarcoidosis with autonomic dysfunction and anti-ganglionic acetylcholine receptor antibodies.

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To determine whether autonomic dysfunction in neurosarcoidosis is associated with anti-ganglionic acetylcholine receptor (gAChR) antibodies, which are detected in autoimmune autonomic ganglionopathy.We retrospectively extracted cases of sarcoidosis from 1787 serum samples of 1,381 patients between 2012 and 2018. Anti-gAChR antibodies against the α3 and β4 subunit were measured by luciferase immunoprecipitation to confirm the clinical features of each case. We summarized literature reviews of neurosarcoidosis with severe dysautonomia to identify relevant clinical features and outcomes.We extracted three new cases of neurosarcoidosis with severe dysautonomia, among which two were positive for anti-gAChR antibodies: Case 1 was positive for antibodies against the β4 subunit, and Case 2 was positive for antibodies against both the α3 and β4 subunits. We reviewed the cases of 15 patients with neurosarcoidosis and severe dysautonomia, including the three cases presented herein. Orthostatic hypotension and orthostatic intolerance were the most common symptoms. Among the various types of neuropathy, small fiber neuropathy (SFN) was the most prevalent, with seven of nine cases exhibiting definite SFN. Six of eight cases had impaired postganglionic fibers, of which the present three cases revealed abnormality of 123I-MIBG myocardial scintigraphy. Of the 11 cases, 10 were responsive to immunotherapy, except one seropositive case (Case 2).The presence of gAChR antibodies may constitute one of the mechanisms by which dysautonomia arises in neurosarcoidosis.


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Authors: Makoto Oishi, Akihiro Mukaino, Misako Kunii, Asami Saito, Yukimasa Arita, Haruki Koike, Osamu Higuchi, Yasuhiro Maeda, Norio Abiru, Naohiro Yamaguchi, Hiroaki Kawano, Eiko Tsuiki, Tomonori Tanaka, Hidenori Matsuo, Masahisa Katsuno, Fumiaki Tanaka, Akira Tsujino, Shunya Nakane

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