Progressive extrinsic ophthalmoplegia with peripheral neuropathy and storage of muscle glycogen

M. Moggio, G. Valli, C. Cerri, G. Scarlato, G. Pellegrini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A case of progressive extrinsic ophthalmoplegia associated with peripheral neuropathy and hypertriglyceridemia type IV is described. Motor and sensory conduction velocities of the spinal nerves were severely decreased, while the EMG of the facial muscles was more suggestive of a myopathic disorder. Electron microscopic study of biopsies of biceps and peroneus brevis muscles disclosed many ragged red fibers, mainly type I, which contained typical abnormal mitochondria. Other fibers, all type II, contained increased amounts of glycogen between myofibrils or beneath the sarcolemmal membrane, but the mitochondria were normal. These fibers were more abundant in the peroneus brevis than in the biceps muscle. Nerve biopsy revealed marked loss of myelinated fibers, but neither mitochondrial changes nor glycogen storages were evident in Schwann's cells. Biochemical investigations confirmed the increased amount of glycogen in both muscle biopsies and revealed a decrease of guanilcyclase. Phosphorylase, phosphorylase b kinase, adenilcyclase, and carnitine concentrations were all normal. The pathogenesis of this syndrome is discussed and the relationship between mitochondrial abnormalities and glycogen accumulation in muscle tissue are considered.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)25-37
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Neurology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 1979


  • Glycogen storage, ophthalmoplegia plus
  • Mitochondria, abnormal
  • Ophthalmoplegia plus
  • Peripheral neuropathy
  • Polyneuropathy, ophthalmoplegia plus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology


Dive into the research topics of 'Progressive extrinsic ophthalmoplegia with peripheral neuropathy and storage of muscle glycogen'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this