Progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy (PML) is an opportunistic infection of the brain caused by the JC-virus. Both a decreased cellular or humoral immune response can increase the susceptibility for JC-virus induced PML. Not only HIV infected people are at risk, a wide range of otherwise immune compromised patients are a potential target for this virus. This report of five PML patients shows the importance of a clinician's familiarity with this disease and it's presenting symptoms. The presenting symptoms of PML can sometimes mimic worsening of the underlying disease. Although different therapeutic strategies have been tried, the outcomes remain very poor. In this series, treatment with cidofovir appears not to be effective in treating PML, neither in HIV positive nor HIV negative patients. Experimental therapy with leflunomide, after tapering of the immunosuppressive medication, did change the natural course of PML in one patient.

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Keywords GS-504 cidifovir, HWA-486 leflunomide, Immunocompromised Host, JC polyomavirus, Progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy
Persistent URL dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ejim.2008.07.032, hdl.handle.net/1765/26996
Citation
Epker, J.L., van Biezen, P., Daele, P.L.A., van Gelder, T., Vossen, A.C.Th.M., & van Saase, J.L.C.M.. (2009). Progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy, a review and an extended report of five patients with different immune compromised states. European Journal of Internal Medicine, 20(3), 261–267. doi:10.1016/j.ejim.2008.07.032