White matter changes first described in children with leukemia, associated with radiation and chemotherapy injury, often associated with methotrexate; pathologically characterized by diffuse reactive astrocytosis with multiple areas of necrotic foci without inflammation. [leuko- + G. enkephalos, brain, + pathos, suffering]
- progressive multifocal l. (PML) a rare, subacute, afebrile disease characterized by areas of demyelinization surrounded by markedly altered neuroglia, including inclusion bodies in glial cells; it occurs usually in individuals with AIDS, leukemia, lymphoma, or other debilitating diseases, or in those who have been receiving immunosuppressive treatment. Caused by JC virus, a human polyoma virus. SYN: progressive subcortical encephalopathy.

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leu·ko·en·ceph·a·lop·a·thy or chiefly Brit leu·co·en·ceph·a·lop·a·thy -in-.sef-ə-'läp-ə-thē n, pl -thies any of various diseases affecting the brain's white matter esp PROGRESSIVE MULTIFOCAL LEUKOENCEPHALOPATHY

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leu·ko·en·ceph·a·lop·a·thy (loo″ko-ən-sef″ə-lopґə-the) any of a group of diseases affecting the white matter of the brain, especially of the cerebral hemispheres, and occurring as a rule in infants and children. The term leukodystrophy is used to denote such disorders due to defect in the formation and maintenance of myelin in infants and children.

Medical dictionary. 2011.

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