Background: GRIN-related developmental-epileptic encephalopathies are associated with a spectrum of neurodevelopmental disorders, including intellectual disability, epilepsy including continuous spike-and-wave during sleep syndrome (CSWS), or epilepsy-aphasia spectrum phenotypes such as in Landau-Kleffner syndrome. Efficacy of IVIG treatment was recently reported in a patient with LKS related to GRIN2A mutation.
Aim and methods: We describe the efficacy of Immunotherapy in 5 consecutive patients (4 males, age range 6 months-13 years) with molecularly confirmed GRIN-related epileptic encephalopathy (4 with GRIN2A- related epilepsy-aphasia spectrum/epileptic encephalopathy with CSWS, accompanied by verbal, communicative and behavioural regression, and one patient with GRIN2D - related infantile developmental-epileptic encephalopathy). All patients had global developmental delay/ intellectual disability in various degrees, and were resistant to anticonvulsants, but none of the patients had frequent clinical seizures. All patients received monthly infusion of IVIG 2 g/ kg for 6 months; 2 patients were also treated with high-dose corticosteroids.
Results: Normalization or near normalization of the EEG was noted in 3 patients, from whom 2 had mild improvement in verbal abilities and communication skills. Perceptual/spatial abilities, as well as executive functions and attention span, remained significantly impaired.
Conclusion: according to this preliminary, open-label study, Immunotherapy may lead to a clinical and electrographic improvement in patients with GRIN-related developmental-epileptic encephalopathies. Further studies to validate the efficacy of immunotherapy and the potential role of autoimmunity in GRIN-related disorders are needed.
Keywords: Developmental epileptic encephalopathy; Epilepsy-Aphasia spectrum; Epileptic encephalopathy; Epileptic encephalopathy with continuous spike-and-wave during sleep syndrome; GRIN2A; GRIN2D; IVIG; Landau-Kleffner.
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