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Selected Highlighted News in the field of Autoimmune

Encephalitis December  2018 2nd edition

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In This Issue: IAES to hold a Virtual Art Show for World Encephalitis Day (WED) 2019, Highly recommended feature article: Systematic Review: Syndromes, Early Diagnosis, and Treatment in Autoimmune Encephalitis, Most popular article of the Month: Dr. Andrew McKeon: When the Body Attacks the Brain, Study and retrospective analysis of AE after Herpes Simplex encephalitis, LGI1 limbic encephalitis: severe but treatable memory impairment

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International Autoimmune Encephalitis Society is holding A Virtual Art Show in recognition of World Encephalitis Day (WED) this February 22nd, 2019.

The IAES Virtual Art Show will showcase art of patients with autoimmune encephalitis, their family members, loved ones and Caregivers. Open to All ages.. Art should be representative of how Autoimmune Encephalitis has affected them.

All art mediums are welcome; pencil, coloring, painting, watercolor, fabric, clay, Photography, whatever medium the artist wants to use to express themselves.

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Systematic Review: Syndromes, Early Diagnosis, and Treatment in Autoimmune Encephalitis

We highly recommend this Review to Physicians, Patients and Caregivers.

The aim of this review is to describe the current state of knowledge about autoimmune encephalitis, in order to provide clinicians with a concise, up-to-date overview. Thus, a comprehensive literature search was performed in medical databases. The literature was carefully studied and new findings focusing on the symptoms, diagnosis and treatment were summarized and interpreted. Even though it might be challenging in some cases, the awareness of certain symptom constellations and demographic information, in combination with laboratory- and MRI-results, allows clinicians to make the diagnosis of probable autoimmune encephalitis at an early stage. Treatment can therefore be initiated faster, which significantly improves the outcome.

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When the body attacks the brain

In the span of eight weeks, Dr. Denise Krivach, a former Abbott Northwestern radiologist, went from making retirement plans in the woods of Montana to being barely able to care for herself.  

Krivach was diagnosed with neurological autoimmune encephalopathy. It is an underdiagnosed condition in which her own immune system was attacking her brain, causing nerve interference, swelling and a loss in cognition.

The diagnosis gave Krivach treatment options that not only stopped her cognitive decline but reversed it. Mayo Clinic is on the forefront of autoimmune neurology research — the study of immune disorders that affect the brain or nervous system. Leading researchers in the field are discovering new antibodies or protein anomalies in nerve cells that lead the immune system to attack or interfere with nerve function. Their work at Mayo Clinic offers hope to patients such as Krivach. A few years ago, she would have likely been resigned to permanent cognitive loss.

Krivach’s condition was initially undiagnosed in part because the concept that the immune system can affect brain function is just now entering conventional medical understanding. The autoimm neurology field is going to get bigger, neurologists say.

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Frequency, symptoms, risk factors, and outcomes of autoimmune encephalitis after herpes simplex encephalitis: a prospective observational study and retrospective analysis


This study is from Dr. Dalmau’s Barcelona group and the Spanish Herpes Simplex Encephalitis Study Group.

Herpes simplex encephalitis can trigger autoimmune encephalitis that leads to neurological worsening. These researchers aimed to assess the frequency, symptoms, risk factors, and outcomes of this complication. 


The results of our prospective study show that autoimmune encephalitis occurred in 27% of patients with herpes simplex encephalitis. It was associated with development of neuronal antibodies and usually presented within 2 months after treatment of herpes simplex encephalitis; the symptoms were age-dependent, and the neurological outcome was worse in young children. Prompt diagnosis is important because patients, primarily those older than 4 years, can respond to immunotherapy.

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LGI1 antibodies alter Kv1.1 and AMPA receptors changing synaptic excitability, plasticity and memory

For those with LGI1 AE – “Overall, these findings demonstrate that patient-derived IgG disrupt presynaptic and postsynaptic LGI1 signaling, causing neuronal hyperexcitability, decreased plasticity, and reversible memory deficits.”  

What experts have to say about this paper: Cambridge Neuroimmunology: “Fantastic dissection of the effects of LGI1 antibodies from patients with Autoimmune Encephalitis. ” 

Dr. Irani, out of the Oxford group: “Exciting study to prove the clinically convincing pathogenicity of these antibodies. But why don’t mice get seizures?”

Your donations are greatly appreciated. Every dollar raised allows us to raise awareness and personally help Patients, Families and Caregivers through their Journey with AE so that best outcomes may be reached. Your contribution to our mission will help save a life and improve the quality of lives for others.  Be a part of the solution by supporting IAES. 

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International Autoimmune Encephalitis Society (IAES) is a Family/Patient centered organization that assists members from getting a diagnosis through to recovery and the many challenges experienced in their journey.


Driven by the knowledge that “Education is Power”, International Autoimmune Encephalitis Society manages an educational support group for patients diagnosed with Autoimmune Encephalitis and their loved ones, empowering them to be strong self-advocates and advocates that will lead them to best outcomes and recovery. We are the premiere organization leading in these vital roles.  Raising awareness of Autoimmune Encephalitis across the many specialties of medicine that come in contact with these disorders and with the general public to ensure a timely and accurate diagnosis resulting in an aggressive treatment plan for best outcomes.

“Empowering victims of Autoimmune Encephalitis and their caregivers through Support and Education”.

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Our website is not a substitute for independent professional medical advice. Nothing contained on our website is intended to be used as medical advice. No content is intended to be used to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease, nor should it be used for therapeutic purposes or as a substitute for your own health professional's advice. Although THE INTERNATIONAL AUTOIMMUNE ENCEPHALITIS SOCIETY  provides a great deal of information about AUTOIMMUNE ENCEPHALITIS, all content is provided for informational purposes only. The International Autoimmune Encephalitis Society  cannot provide medical advice.

International Autoimmune Encephalitis Society is a charitable non-profit 501(c)(3) organization founded in 2016 by Tabitha Andrews Orth, Gene Desotell and Anji Hogan-Fesler. Tax ID# 81-3752344. Donations raised directly supports research, patients, families and caregivers impacted by autoimmune encephalitis and to educating healthcare communities around the world. Financial statement will be made available upon request.

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