Theme 3 | Rare diseases

Autoantibodies against myelin oligodendrocyte glycoprotein in patients with a psychotic disorder. 

Nikita van de Burgt

Nikita van de Burgt1, Laila Kulsvehagen2, Luc Lutz2, Nicole Leibold1, Therese van Amelsvoort1, Anne-Katrin Pröbstel2, Pilar Martinez1 

1.Department of Psychiatry and Neuropsychology, School of Mental Health and Neuroscience (MHeNS), Maastricht University, Maastricht, The Netherlands
2.Department of Neurology, University Hospital Basel, Basel, Switzerland

Myelin oligodendrocyte glycoprotein (MOG) is a glycoprotein located on the surface of myelin sheaths in the central nervous system. Antibodies against MOG result in damage to oligodendrocytes and neurons and, consequently, are associated with demyelinating diseases. However, immunotherapy results in a reduced risk of relapses and better disability outcomes. Additionally, MOG antibodies are significantly associated with Neuropsychiatric Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (NPSLE), a type of SLE that is characterized by cognitive impairment, seizures and psychosis. It is unknown whether these autoantibodies are associated with the clinical manifestation of psychotic disorder.

Blood and CSF samples of 116 patients with psychotic disorder were collected via various recruitment sites in Europe. Blood control samples were derived from non-disease blood donors. Patients were age- and sex-matched with controls. For the detection of MOG autoantibodies, Human Rhabdomyosarcoma (TE 671) cells were transfected with full-length human or rat MOG or the respective empty vector as a negative control. Transfected cells were incubated with patient sera or CSF and Phycoerythrin-labeled anti-human IgG was used as a secondary antibody. For each patient, the ratio of the geometric mean channel fluorescence (MCF) of the transfected cell line divided by the MCF of the untransfected cell line was calculated. Patients with a MCF above 3.0 were considered positive. 

Based on the result, we will determine the correlation between the presence of MOG antibodies and the degree of the clinical manifestation. Overall, these preliminary results suggest that in some cases MOG antibodies may play a role in the psychotic disorder and that immunotherapy may lead to less relapses and a better clinical outcome. 

Myelin oligodendrocyte glycoprotein, psychotic disorder, antibodies

The School for Mental Health and Neuroscience (MHeNs) strives to advance our understanding of brain-behaviour relationships by using an approach integrating various disciplines in neuro- and behavioural science, medicine, and the life sciences more widely. MHeNs performs high-impact mental health and neuroscience research and educates master's students and PhD researchers. MHeNs performs translational research, meaning practical collaboration between researchers in the lab and in the hospital. MHeNs is one of six graduate schools of the Faculty of Health, Medicine and Life Sciences (FHML) aligned to the Maastricht University Medical Centre+ (MUMC+).