A 20-week fetus affected with cerebro-ocular dysplasia and muscular dystrophy (Walker-Warburg Syndrome) is reported. The central nervous system (CNS) findings were typical of those previously described in this disorder, and were characterized by lissencephaly, hydrocephalus, and cerebral and cerebellar cortical dysplasia with glial and neuronal displacement into the leptomeninges. In addition, severe hypoplasia of pyramidal tracts were noted in the brain stem and spinal cord, as well as malformation of the inferior olivary and dentate nuclei. Skeletal muscle and eyes appeared normal on light microscopy. The genetic defect in this disorder is expressed in the CNS early during the first trimester and causes a marked disorder of cellular migration. Overt changes in muscle occur during a later period. The changes in the CNS are similar to, but more severe than, those found in Fukuyama congenital muscular dystrophy, and both may represent a failure of constraint of neuronal migration. Whether the syndromes characterized by cerebro-ocular dysplasia and muscular dystrophy are genetically heterogeneous or allelic variations is unknown. Molecular genetic analysis should elucidate this question.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Pathology and Forensic Medicine
- Clinical Neurology
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience