Coeliac disease, epilepsy, and cerebral calcifications: association with TG6 autoantibodies

Authors


Dr Alexandra M Johnson, Neurology Department, Sydney Children’s Hospital, High Street, Randwick, NSW 2031, Australia. E-mail: alexandra.johnson@sesiahs.health.nsw.gov.au

Abstract

A 4-year-old boy presented with occipital seizures but normal initial neuroimaging and proved refractory to antiepileptic medications. On repeat neuroimaging after 1 year, he had developed bi-occipital calcification and was then found to have positive coeliac serology. He was diagnosed with coeliac disease, epilepsy, and cerebral calcifications (CEC) and became seizure free after starting the gluten-free diet. Positive antibody binding to neurons and glia was demonstrated on indirect immunofluorescence. High levels of immunoglobulin-A directed against transglutaminase isoenzyme 6 (TG6) were found in the patient’s serum. The positive response to the diet, TG6 antibodies, and neuronal antibody binding suggest that CEC might be autoimmune in nature, as in other extra-intestinal manifestations of gluten-related diseases, such as gluten ataxia.

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