Paraneoplastic Cerebellar Degeneration: The Importance of Including CDR2L as a Diagnostic Marker

Objective

Investigate the value of including cerebellar degeneration-related protein 2-like (CDR2L) as a marker in commercial diagnostic tests for anti-Yo–associated paraneoplastic cerebellar degeneration (PCD).

Methods

We included sera and CSF samples from 24 patients with suspected PCD (6 of whom had PCD with underlying gynecologic or breast cancer), who were positive for Yo antibodies using the commercially available, paraneoplastic neurologic syndromes (PNS) 14 Line Assay from Ravo Diagnostika. The samples were further evaluated using the EUROLINE PNS 12 Ag Line Assay and a cell-based assay (CBA) from Euroimmun. For confirmation of positive lineblot results, we used indirect immunofluorescence of rat cerebellar sections. We also tested all samples in 2 assays developed in-house: a CBA for CDR2L and a Western blot analysis using recombinant cerebellar degeneration-related protein 2 (CDR2) and CDR2L proteins.

Results

In PNS 14 and PNS 12 Ag Line Assays, anti-CDR2 reactivity was observed for 24 (100%) and 20 (83%) of the 24 samples, respectively. Thirteen of 24 subjects (54%) were also positive using the Euroimmun CBA. Rat cerebellar immunofluorescence was the best confirmatory test. In our in-house CBA for CDR2L and Western blot for CDR2 and CDR2L, only the 6 patients with confirmed PCD reacted with CDR2L.

Conclusions

Commercially available tests for Yo antibody detection have low specificity for PCD because these assays use CDR2 as antigen. By adding a test for CDR2L, which is the major Yo antigen, the accuracy of PCD diagnosis greatly improved.

Classification of Evidence

This study provides Class III evidence that a CBA for CDR2L accurately identifies patients with PCD.

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