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THE HERD September 1st edition

theherd - THE HERD September 1st edition

Don’t Be Left Behind. Keep Up With THE HERD!

Supportive assistance guide for your AE Journey~

September 2022 1st Edition

In this Issue~


  • *Announcements:  Caregiver Monthly Zoom Support Group, #AETuesdayTries, LGI1 Research Survey, The ExTINGUISH Trial
  • *Children’s Corner (for all ages): Video: A Walk through Autoimmunity, Dopamine-2 receptor antibody encephalitis presenting as pure tongue-biting in a Tourette syndrome patient: a case report
  • *ABI Rehabilitation: Card Recall, Find Your Way Game
  • *Helpful Tips for the AE Warrior:  Autoimmune Encephalitis and Related Disorders of the Nervous System
  • *Most Popular Visuals: Seizure Types & Symptoms, Invisible Challenges of Living with AE 
  • *Featured AE Article: Driving After Brain Injury
  • *Podcast: ANA Investigates Updates in Autoimmune Encephalitis, part 2, Therapeutics
  • *Clinician’s Corner: Cytokine dynamics and targeted immunotherapies in autoimmune encephalitis
  • *Open Access: Abnormal Brain MRI Findings in Anti-N-Methyl-D-Aspartate Receptor Encephalitis and Correlation With Outcomes
  •   *AE Trivia Cards:  The Single Most Important Educational/Rehabilitation Tool for AE 
  • *AE Warrior Store:  Shop for Your AE Bling and Raise Awareness 
  • *Shop & Support IAES: Sign up for PayPal’s #GiveAtCheckOut and Amazon Smiles

Announcements ~

Caregiver Monthly Zoom Support Group

The next monthly meeting will take place on September 8th at 6 pm PST/9 pm EST. The IAES Caregiver Support Group takes place on the 2nd Thursday of each month. This is a ‘safe space’ where caregivers can build relationships/friendships with others who are “walking that walk”, share/vent, and receive the support and direction they so richly deserve.

AE Caregivers have a variety of unique challenges that are different from the AE Warrior’s. Often they feel alone and need to be able to share their concerns with others who are on that same journey. Sometimes hearing a chorus of ‘Me Too!’ can have great healing power of its own. Additionally, some of you may qualify for services you are unaware of that could assist or solve a challenge you (or your loved one) are having. As topics are discussed, your hostess, Mari Davis, will direct you to available solutions, services and supports.

Your Hostess, IAES Support Services Coordinator Mari Wagner Davis, has 30 years of experience as an accredited Nurse Case Manager. Mari’s professional career prior to becoming ill with Autoimmune Encephalitis was to locate and arrange for the support services needed for patients when released from the hospital to rehabilitation or home.


The next monthly #AETuesdayTries zoom meet-up will take place September 27th, and will always be the last Tuesday of each month.

“Tuesday Tries” addresses the emotional support and rehabilitation AE patients and caregivers require in recovering from autoimmune encephalitis by building your resilience. The program utilizes science-based exercises from the work of PERMA; Seligman, 2012.

IAES wants to foster your capacity in the belief that better days are ahead! “Tuesday Tries” is about practicing a strengths-based approach by “normalizing the try;” celebrating critical milestones in the recovery and care of AE patients and caregivers in order to build a more resilient network of care.

A workbook organizer, “Growing Your Resilience” has been created to accompany the #AETuesdayTries program and is located on the ‘Apps and Tools for AE Warriors’ page in the section: ‘Building Your Resilience’ on the IAES website under the ‘For Patients’ tab. A link to download the organizer is also provided within your e-mail confirmation when you register.

Join AE patients and caregivers of all ages and stages in their AE journey.  Receive insights and encouragement from others and celebrate your critical milestones in recovery and care while  building a more resilient personal AE network!

Your facilitator, Tessa McKenzie, IAES’ Chief Resilience Officer, is a life coach and studies “resilience” through her private practice, Envisage Vocation Creation and work with Johns Hopkins University’s Life Design Lab. Join Tessa and other AE patients and caregivers who are ready to “Share Your Try Tuesdays”. Tessa will provide prompts for the reframe of perceived failures as well as peer-to-peer validation of “wins” and opportunities for relationship building.

LGI1 Research Survey

If you live in the United States, United Kingdom, Spain or Germany, please enroll!


A Pharma company wants to understand what the journey of an Anti-LGI1 Autoimmune Encephalitis patient is like and needs your help!

The research has two parts: an online survey and a one-hour telephone interview.  It addresses both patients and/or carers and you will be financially reimbursed for your time.

This is a GOLDEN opportunity for you to assist a Pharma company interested in developing new treatments for LGI1 patients directly. It is vital that they understand our AE journey and struggle! YOUR input will drive future progress for yourself and patients who will receive this diagnosis in the future. You can be a catalyst for change!


This is the first-ever Clinical Trial for a promising new drug, Inebilizumab, to treat anti-NMDA receptor encephalitis, and will be funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH). 

This trial is actively recruiting. International Autoimmune Encephalitis Society is honored to be supporting the ExTINGUISH trial along with Autoimmune Encephalitis Alliance and The anti-NMDA Receptor Encephalitis Foundation. 

 Main Inclusion Criteria (in part)

Enrollment  is limited to 116 newly diagnosed patients with a confirmed diagnosis of anti-NMDAR Encephalitis who are 18 years or older. Patients must have received at least 3 days of methylprednisolone 1000 mg IV or equivalent corticosteroid within 30 days prior to randomization (Day 1). In addition, patients must have received EITHER of the following treatments within 30 days before randomization.

  • IVIg, at a minimum dose of 2 g/kg
  • Plasma exchange or plasmapheresis, with a minimum of 5 treatments. NOTE: These treatments may be provided during the screening period, but must be completed prior to randomization.

 mRS of ≥3 at the screening visit, indicating at least moderate disability.  Ability and willingness to attend study visits and complete the study.

Children’s Corner

A Walk through Autoimmunity

Appropriate for all ages, this entertaining video is the best explanation of autoimmunity we have found to date. 

Dopamine-2 receptor antibody encephalitis presenting as pure tongue-biting in a Tourette syndrome patient: a case report

A 13-year-old boy with a history of Tourette syndrome (TS) presented with acute tongue-biting without positive neurologic examination or auxiliary examination results, except for a weakly positive finding for D2R antibodies in the serum sample. He was initially diagnosed with possible D2R encephalitis, but the influence of TS could not be ruled out. In addition to psychotropics, we administered immunotherapy early based on clinical characteristics, and his symptoms were ameliorated significantly. During the follow-up, he was diagnosed with definite D2R encephalitis, and the dosage of psychotropics was further adjusted for fluctuating symptoms.

This case suggests that clinicians should discern D2R encephalitis in TS patients when tics are the primary symptoms. Administering immunotherapy early, according to clinical characteristics, may benefit the patient. Moreover, the features of premonitory urges could help evaluate the state of TS.

ABI Rehabilitation From AE

Card Recall

A great exercise to play with AE Trivia Cards! Select four playing cards in sequence (3 of clubs, 4 of clubs, 5 of clubs) and place in random order face up. After five seconds turn the cards face down.

Then turn the cards over in sequence (3, then 4, then 5).

As you improve increase the number of cards in the sequence, allowing one more second of view time for each card added, to a maximum of 7 cards.

Find Your Way

Do you know the game “Find Your Way!”?
This exercise requires you to reproduce an itinerary. A trail made up of stones will light up at random and you must memorize the path it creates.
For this task, the main brain structure at work is the hippocampus. The hippocampus is located in the medial temporal lobe. It forms a part of the limbic system and plays a part in long-term memory and spatial navigation, more specifically, in storing and processing spatial information.
Try this game for free right now!

Helpful Tips for Patients & Families

Book Recommendation: 

Autoimmune Encephalitis and Related Disorders of the Nervous System

Autoimmune encephalitis, diseases where the immune system attacks the brain, have become a fast-moving field of study in recent years. The authors, Drs Josep Dalmau (who collaborated with IAES on AE Trivia Playing Cards), and Francesc Graus, have played pivotal roles in the discovery of these diseases. Here, they provide a comprehensive clinical guide to the differential diagnosis of these disorders, illustrated with over 200 figures, 30 videos and numerous clinical vignettes, many from their own practice. Clinical descriptions are straightforward, emphasizing distinctive diagnostic clues for each disease. The strengths and weaknesses of diagnostic tests and clinical criteria are discussed extensively, as well as the best evidence supporting the use of available treatments. There is an up-to-date description of immunological triggers and comorbidities, and well-illustrated and clearly summarized pathogenic mechanisms and disease models.

Most Popular Visuals

Seizure Types & Symptoms

The Invisible Challenges of  Living with AE

Featured AE Article

Driving After Brain Injury

Driving can be a skill that many individuals with Autoimmune Encephalitis hope to return to. Obtaining training through rehabilitation can address areas where skills may be weak allowing the AE patient to resume driving and reclaim independence.


ANA Investigates Updates in Autoimmune Encephalitis, part 2, Therapeutics

This podcast turns to advances in the treatment of autoimmune encephalitis. Treating these conditions has traditionally been practitioner-dependent, and currently no FDA-approved therapies exist. But that’s beginning to change. Series 3, Episode 9. Featuring: Guest: Dr. Maarten Titulaer, Erasmus MC University Medical Center.  Interviewer/Producer: Dr. Rohini Samudralwar, University of Pennsylvania.

Clinician’s Corner

Cytokine dynamics and targeted immunotherapies in autoimmune encephalitis

Recent improvements in cytokine identification and quantification provide new insights into the immune mechanism underlying neuroinflammation. In this review, we summarized several studies that explored their dynamics and suitability as prognostic and therapeutic biomarkers in AE, chiefly anti-NMDAR and anti-LGI1 encephalitis, reflecting the synergic pathogenic role of humoral and cellular immunity.

The CSF/serum cytokine gradient and BBB dysfunction were rarely reported despite being crucial to determine intrathecal production. Hence, future studies should study cytokines in paired CSF/serum samples at similar time-points, as the concentration and location of cytokines may change during the course of the disease and after the administration of immunomodulators. Otherwise, the results obtained may lead to misinterpretations that might explain the high heterogeneity observed so far.

The increasing knowledge on the cytokine dynamics summarized in this review offers a promising opportunity to treat patients in a personalized manner that could change the present paradigm of AE management.

Open Access

Abnormal Brain MRI Findings in Anti-N-Methyl-D-Aspartate Receptor Encephalitis and Correlation With Outcomes

Thirty-seven (71.15%) of the patients showed abnormalities on brain MRI; these patients were more likely to be men and showed abnormalities on electroencephalography. Patients who showed normal or abnormal MRI findings did not differ significantly in terms of clinical symptoms, rates of mortality or relapse, or mRS scores after 3 and 12 months. However, patients with abnormal MRI showed significantly lower MMSE scores than those with normal MRI after 3 and 12 months.

In all the 52 patients, 35 (67.31%) showed good outcomes after 3 months, and this rate increased to 76.92% after 12 months. In 3 months, five (9.62%) of the patients had died and six (11.54%) had experienced relapse (Table 2). In 12 months, the number of mortalities did not increase, but relapse rate increased to 15.38%.

AE Trivia Playing Cards

The perfect companion  for patients, caregivers & therapists

Doctor Recommended

Created by IAES and in collaboration with Josep Dalmau, M.D., Ph.D. (The World’s leading expert on AE).  This deck answers 52 of the most commonly asked questions about AE and doubles as a rehabilitation tool.  Increase your knowledge and become a strong advocate quickly and easily with AE trivia cards. 

We appreciate the National Organization of Rare Diseases’ (NORD) enthusiastic support in recommending this groundbreaking product. 

AE Warrior Store

Shop for Your AE Bling and Raise Awareness

AE Warrior Store products proclaim the bravery and fighting spirit it takes to fight AE and regain your health. Shirts, hoodies, hats, puzzles, mugs and gift items make this your one stop shop for patients, caregivers and friends who have a vested interest in raising awareness for Autoimmune Encephalitis.  Designs can be transferred to any product you prefer. The proceeds of your purchase will immediately support Autoimmune Encephalitis patients, caregivers, and families who are walking this difficult journey.

IAES holds the trademark for #AEWarrior, AE Warrior and Autoimmune Encephalitis Warrior and is the creator of these phrases. Proceeds also go to support research that may one day lead to a cure.

Don’t forget to #GiveAtCheckOut if you purchase your gift through PayPal! (See: Shop and Support IAES Through PayPal’s #GiveAtCheckOut program below).

The proceeds of your purchase will immediately support Autoimmune Encephalitis patients, caregivers, and families who are walking this difficult journey. Proceeds also go to support research that may one day lead to a cure.


Shop & Support IAES Through PayPal’s 


Have you wanted to support IAES, Autoimmune Encephalitis awareness, and the AE Warrior that you love?

Here is an easy and affordable way to donate without feeling a thing when shopping with your Paypal account. Each time you check out you will be reminded of an opportunity to give $1 to IAES.

Simply go to your PayPal account and select “set favorite charity”, and choose International Autoimmune Encephalitis Society.  When you make a purchase and check out, an option comes up that asks if you would like to give $1 to IAES? 

Help create the positive change you envision for the AE Community by donating your change.

Get that great deal online and support IAES at the same time!

When you shop Amazon Smiles and select IAES as the non-profit you want to support, Amazon will donate .5% of our purchases to the International Autoimmune Encephalitis Society.

This simple act of kindness, will support the work we do and advance our ability to service the community. MakeMeSmile is an extension for Chrome that makes sure you select International Autoimmune Encephalitis Society when you shop online. It’s free to download. And you  don’t even need to sign up.

Are YOU an IAES angel? Do you love someone with AE? Do you want to raise AE awareness to not just support AE Warriors but lead researchers to finding a cure?  The IAES Angel is someone who lifted IAES upward by ensuring that comfort, guidance and improved health is brought into an AE patient’s life.

IAES Angels are motivated by their Spirit of giving.  They are Champions in raising AE awareness. Your devotion to supporting our mission and improving the lives of those who suffer from AE is felt mightily and immediately put to use. 

When you become an #IAESANGEL, International Autoimmune Encephalitis Society will send you this badge and profile frame to place on your Facebook page or Website.  As badges ‘take flight’ heralding IAES has been ‘touched by an angel’, others will take notice and they too may find their wings. Together, we will create a future where AE is eradicated from this world and only referenced in medical history books.

International Autoimmune Encephalitis Society is proud to be a platinum level participant on the Guide Star exchange, demonstrating or commitment to financial transparency.  IAES is a charitable non-profit 501 (c)(3) organization. Tax ID#81-3752344

Donations raised are greatly appreciated and directly support research, patients, caregivers, and families through their journey so the best outcomes can 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.

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”, Int’l AE Society manages an educational support group for patients diagnosed with Autoimmune Encephalitis and their loved ones on Face Book, 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.

On June 16th- 2022, International Autoimmune Encephalitis Society and Tabitha Orth, IAES President and Founder, officially became the 7,315th “point of light”. The award was founded by President George H.W. Bush in 1990.
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