Non-paraneoplastic limbic encephalitis associated with anti-glutamic acid decarboxylase antibodies

Sabrina Matà, Gian Carlo Muscas, Ilaria Naldi, Eleonora Rosati, Sergio Paladini, Barbara Cruciatti, Francesca Bisulli, Marco Paganini, Gustavo Mazzi, Sandro Sorbi, Paolo Tinuper

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Limbic encephalitis (LE) is a neurological syndrome that may present in association with cancer, infection, or as an isolate clinical condition often accompanying autoimmune disorders. Here we have characterized the clinical and laboratory features of two patients presenting with subacute onset, and chronic evolution, of anterograde amnesia and drug-resistant epilepsy associated with thyroid autoimmunity and in absence of tumoral pathology despite long follow-up. Antibodies against onconeural antigens, voltage gated potassium channel and glutamate receptors, which may accompany paraneoplastic as well as non-paraneoplastic LE, were negative. However, biochemical studies showed high titers, and sustained intrathecal synthesis, of antibodies directed against neuronal glutamic acid decarboxylase (GAD). In one patient, plasma exchange determined a dramatic improvement of the neurological deficits along with the decrease of autoantibodies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)155-159
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Neuroimmunology
Issue number1-2
Publication statusPublished - Aug 13 2008


  • Anti-GAD antibodies
  • Hashimoto's encephalopathy
  • Human herpesvirus 6
  • Intrathecal synthesis
  • Limbic encephalitis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Neurology

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