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The Heidenhain variant of Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (HvCJD), as a rare phenotype of CJD, has been under-recognized. We aim to elucidate the clinical and genetic features of HvCJD and investigate the differences of clinical features between genetic and sporadic HvCJD to improve our understanding of this rare subtype. HvCJD patients admitted to the Xuanwu Hospital from February 2012 to September 2022 were identified, and published reports on genetic HvCJD cases were also reviewed. The clinical and genetic features of HvCJD were summarized, and the clinical features between genetic and sporadic HvCJD were compared. A total of 18 (7.9%) HvCJD patients were identified from 229 CJD cases. Blurred vision was the most common visual disturbance at the disease's onset, and the median duration of isolated visual symptoms was 30.0 (14.8-40.0) days. DWI hyperintensities could appear in the early stage, which might help with early diagnosis. Combined with previous studies, nine genetic HvCJD cases were identified. The most common mutation was V210I (4/9), and all patients (9/9) had methionine homozygosity (MM) at codon 129. Only 25% of cases had a family history of the disease. Compared to sporadic HvCJD, genetic HvCJD cases were more likely to present with non-blurred vision visual symptoms at onset and develop cortical blindness during the progression of the disease. HvCJD not only could be sporadic, but also, it could be caused by different PRNP mutations. Sporadic HvCJD was more likely to present with blurred vision visual symptoms at onset, and genetic HvCJD was more likely to develop cortical blindness with the disease's progression.


Yu Kong, Zhongyun Chen, Jing Zhang, Xue Wang, Liyong Wu. Clinical and Genetic Characteristics of the Heidenhain Variant of Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease. Viruses. 2023 Apr 29;15(5)

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PMID: 37243178

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