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September 1978

Erythrocyte Membrane Studies in Familial Hypokalemic Periodic Paralysis

Arch Neurol. 1978;35(9):615-616. doi:10.1001/archneur.1978.00500330063013

• A study of RBC membrane functions was performed in four patients suffering from familial hypokalemic periodic paralysis who had permanent muscular weakness. Electrophoretograms of membrane proteins, cell deformability, calciumpromoted potassium efflux, calcium-ATPase activity, and endogeneous phosphorylation of membrane proteins were all within the normal range.

These results are compared with similar studies performed in myotonic and Duchenne-type dystrophies, in which abnormalities in the RBC membrane have been described.

The results do not support the theory of RBC involvement in hypokalemic periodic paralysis. However, this does not imply that the muscle cell membrane is not involved in the underlying pathological process in this disorder.