[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Rituximab improves outcomes for persons with lymphoproliferative disorders and is increasingly used to treat immune-mediated illnesses. Recent reports describe 2 patients with systemic lupus erythematosus and 1 with rheumatoid arthritis who developed progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy (PML) after rituximab treatment. We reviewed PML case descriptions among patients treated with rituximab from the Food and Drug Administration, the manufacturer, physicians, and a literature review from 1997 to 2008. Overall, 52 patients with lymphoproliferative disorders, 2 patients with systemic lupus erythematosus, 1 patient with rheumatoid arthritis, 1 patient with an idiopathic autoimmune pancytopenia, and 1 patient with immune thrombocytopenia developed PML after treatment with rituximab and other agents. Other treatments included hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (7 patients), purine analogs (26 patients), or alkylating agents (39 patients). One patient with an autoimmune hemolytic anemia developed PML after treatment with corticosteroids and rituximab, and 1 patient with an autoimmune pancytopenia developed PML after treatment with corticosteroids, azathioprine, and rituximab. Median time from last rituximab dose to PML diagnosis was 5.5 months. Median time to death after PML diagnosis was 2.0 months. The case-fatality rate was 90%. Awareness is needed of the potential for PML among rituximab-treated persons.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The structure of the planum temporale is often disturbed in disorders with associated communication problems, particularly in auditory and language processing areas in the brain. We hypothesized that people with autism would have reduced left hemisphere volumes in the planum temporale, a language related brain structure. We performed magnetic resonance imaging scans of 15 adults with autistic disorder and 15 comparison subjects, and measured the volume of gray matter in the planum temporale and Heschl's gyrus (HG) in both hemispheres. Planum temporale volume reduced in the left hemisphere of the autism group (P<0.003). No differences in HG volumes were observed between the two groups. The volume reduction seen in the left hemisphere of the autism group may suggest an early neurodevelopmental disturbance in autism that impacts language development.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Deficits in basic auditory perception have been described in schizophrenia. Previous electrophysiologic imaging research has documented a structure-function disassociation in the auditory system in schizophrenia. This study examines whether the most fundamental level of auditory cortical organization, tonotopy, is altered in schizophrenia.
The tonotopic organization for five tone frequencies in 19 patients with schizophrenia and 22 comparison subjects was evaluated using magnetoencephalography. Auditory evoked magnetic field dipole locations were examined for the N100m component for each frequency.
The expected linear relationship between depth and frequency was found in the comparison subjects but not in the schizophrenia group (p <.004). In addition, normal anterior-posterior asymmetry of the N100m was found to be reduced at all five stimulation frequencies employed in the study (p <.04). No relationships between clinical symptom ratings and either tonotopy or asymmetry were observed.
This finding suggests that the tonotopic organization of the auditory cortex in schizophrenia is disturbed and may help explain the relatively poor behavioral performance of schizophrenia patients on simple frequency discrimination tasks. Alterations in fundamental sensory organization may underlie or interact with higher order cognitive mechanisms to produce changes in cognitive task performance.