BMC Neurol. 2023 Feb 2;23(1):52. doi: 10.1186/s12883-023-03094-w.
BACKGROUND: Progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy (PML) is a devastating demyelinating disorder of the central nervous system caused by opportunistic infection of the JC virus (JCV).
CASE PRESENTATION: A 58-year-old Japanese woman was admitted to our hospital for aphasia. She had a 5-year history of untreated sarcoidosis and was a human T cell lymphotropic virus-1 (HTLV-1) carrier. Serum angiotensin-converting enzyme, soluble interleukin-2 receptor, lysozyme, and calcium levels were elevated. JCV-DNA was not detected in cerebrospinal fluid by PCR testing. Skin biopsy revealed noncaseating granuloma formation. Bilateral multiple nodular lesions were present on chest X-ray. Brain magnetic resonance imaging showed left frontal and temporal lesions without gadolinium enhancement. As we suspected that systemic sarcoidosis had developed into neurosarcoidosis, we started steroid and infliximab administration. After treatment, the chest X-ray and serum abnormalities ameliorated, but the neurological deficits remained. At 1 month after immunotherapy, she developed right hemiparesis. Cerebrospinal fluid was positive for prototype (PML-type) JCV on repeated PCR testing. Brain biopsy revealed demyelinating lesions with macrophage infiltration, atypical astrocytes, and JCV antigen-positive cells. We diagnosed her with PML and started mefloquine, leading to partial remission.
CONCLUSIONS: Sarcoidosis and HTLV-1 infection both affect T cell function, especially CD4+ T cells, and may developped the patient’s PML. The comorbidity of sarcoidosis, PML, and HTLV-1 infection has not been reported, and this is the world’s first report of PML associated with HTLV-1 infection and sarcoidosis.