Importance: Immune-mediated rippling muscle disease (iRMD) is a rare myopathy characterized by wavelike muscle contractions (rippling) and percussion- or stretch-induced muscle mounding. A serological biomarker of this disease is lacking. Objective: To describe a novel autoantibody biomarker of iRMD and report associated clinicopathological characteristics. Design, Setting, and Participants: This retrospective cohort study evaluated archived sera from 10 adult patients at tertiary care centers at the Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota, and Brigham & Women's Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts, who were diagnosed with iRMD by neuromuscular specialists in 2000 and 2021, based on the presence of electrically silent percussion- or stretch-induced muscle rippling and percussion-induced rapid muscle contraction with or without muscle mounding and an autoimmune basis. Sera were evaluated for a common biomarker using phage immunoprecipitation sequencing. Myopathology consistent with iRMD was documented in most patients. The median (range) follow-up was 18 (1-30) months. Exposures: Diagnosis of iRMD. Main Outcomes and Measures: Detection of a common autoantibody in serum of patients sharing similar clinical and myopathological features. Results: Seven male individuals and 3 female individuals with iRMD were identified (median [range] age at onset, 60 [18-76] years). An IgG autoantibody specific for caveolae-associated protein 4 (cavin-4) was identified in serum of patients with iRMD using human proteome phage immunoprecipitation sequencing. Immunoassays using recombinant cavin-4 confirmed cavin-4 IgG seropositivity in 8 of 10 patients with iRMD. Results for healthy and disease-control individuals (n = 241, including myasthenia gravis and immune-mediated myopathies) were cavin-4 IgG seronegative. Six of the 8 individuals with cavin-4 IgG were male, and the median (range) age was 60 (18-76) years. Initial symptoms included rippling of lower limb muscles in 5 of 8 individuals or all limb muscles in 2 of 8 sparing bulbar muscles, fatigue in 9 of 10, mild proximal weakness in 3 of 8, and isolated myalgia in 1 of 8, followed by development of diffuse rippling. All patients had percussion-induced muscle rippling and half had percussion- or stretch-induced muscle mounding. Four of the 10 patients had proximal weakness. Plasma creatine kinase was elevated in all but 1 patient. Six of the 10 patients underwent malignancy screening; cancer was detected prospectively in only 1. Muscle biopsy was performed in 7 of the 8 patients with cavin-4 IgG; 6 of 6 specimens analyzed immunohistochemically revealed a mosaic pattern of sarcolemmal cavin-4 immunoreactivity. Three of 6 patients whose results were seropositive and who received immunotherapy had complete resolution of symptoms, 1 had mild improvement, and 2 had no change. Conclusions and Relevance: The findings indicate that cavin-4 IgG may be the first specific serological autoantibody biomarker identified in iRMD. Depletion of cavin-4 expression in muscle biopsies of patients with iRMD suggests the potential role of this autoantigen in disease pathogenesis.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Neurology