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Clinical and Developmental Immunology
Volume 13, Issue 2-4, Pages 381-387

Vaccination and Infection as Causative Factors in Japanese Patients With Rasmussen Syndrome: Molecular Mimicry and HLA Class I

1National Epilepsy Center, Shizuoka Institute of Epilepsy and Neurological Disorders, Shizuoka 420-868, Japan
2Kanagawa Children's Medical Center, Mutsukawa 2-138-4, Minami-ku, Yokohama 232-8555, Japan
3National Nishi-Niigata Central Hospital, 1-14-1 Masago, Niigata 950-2085, Japan
4Gifu Prefectural Gifu Hospital, 4-6-1 Noishiki, Gifu, 500-8717, Japan
5Chunou Kosei Hospital, 5-1 Wakakusa-dori, Seki 501-3802, Japan
6Department of Pediatrics, Gifu University School of Medicine, Gifu 500-8705, Japan

Copyright © 2006 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Rasmussen syndrome is an intractable epilepsy with a putative causal relation with cellular and humoral autoimmunity. Almost half of the patients have some preceding causative factors, with infections found in 38.2%, vaccinations in 5.9% and head trauma in 8.9% of Japanese patients. In a patient with seizure onset after influenza A infections, cross-reaction of the patient's lymphocytes with GluRε2 and influenza vaccine components was demonstrated by lymphocyte stimulation test. Database analyses revealed that influenza A virus hemagglutinin and GluRε2 molecules contain peptides with the patient's HLA class I binding motif (HLA ࢤ A*0201). The relative risks of HLA class I genotypes for Rasmussen syndrome are 6.1 (A*2402), 6.4 (A*0201), 6.3 (A*2601) and 11.4 (B*4601). The relative risks of HLA class I-A and B haplotypes are infinity (A*2601+B*5401), 21.1 (A*2402+B*1501), 13.3 (A*2402+B*4801) and 5.1 (A*2402+B*5201). Some alleles and haplotypes of HLA class I may be the risk factors in Japanese patients. Cross-reactivity of cytotoxic T lymphocytes may contribute to the processes leading from infection to the involvement of CNS.