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December 1974

Subependymal Germinolysis

Author Affiliations

From the Laboratory of Neuropathology, Department of Pathology, University of Washington, School of Medicine, Seattle.

Arch Neurol. 1974;31(6):374-381. doi:10.1001/archneur.1974.00490420040003

Small subependymal cysts in the medioventral aspect of the caudate nucleus have been found in 30 human autopsied cases. The cysts are interpreted as a result of lysis of undifferentiated cells in the germinal matrix by various agents selectively attacking these cells while they are actively proliferating. Rubella virus and cytomegalovirus are two viruses that can cause this lesion, but other viruses or other agents yet to be discovered similarly may produce this relatively inconspicuous lesion when fetuses are exposed at a critical period in their development. The involvement of the telencephalic germinal matrix late in gestation results in imperfect development of the white matter and the supporting elements, which is a still more subtle lesion probably responsible for the striking functional subnormality.

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