Dopaminergic dysfunction in unrelated, asymptomatic carriers of a single parkin mutation.
ABSTRACT Parkin disease is usually autosomal recessive; however, two studies have shown that asymptomatic heterozygotes have nigrostriatal dysfunction and even manifest subtle extrapyramidal signs. The authors used 18F-dopa PET to study 13 asymptomatic parkin heterozygotes and found a significant reduction of (18)F-dopa uptake in caudate, putamen, ventral, and dorsal midbrain compared with control subjects. Four had subtle extrapyramidal signs. Parkin heterozygosity is a risk factor for nigrostriatal dysfunction and in some may contribute to late-onset Parkinson disease.
- Movement Disorders 12/2013; · 5.63 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Although Parkinson's disease (PD) was first described almost 200 years ago, it remains an incurable disease with a cause that is not fully understood. Nowadays it is known that disturbances in the structure of pathological proteins in PD can be caused by more than environmental and genetic factors. Despite numerous debates and controversies in the literature about the role of mutations in the SNCA and PRKN genes in the pathogenesis of PD, it is evident that these genes play a key role in maintaining dopamine (DA) neuronal homeostasis and that the dysfunction of this homeostasis is relevant to both familial (FPD) and sporadic (SPD) PD with different onset. In recent years, the importance of alphasynuclein (ASN) in the process of neurodegeneration and neuroprotective function of the Parkin is becoming better understood. Moreover, there have been an increasing number of recent reports indicating the importance of the interaction between these proteins and their encoding genes. Among others interactions, it is suggested that even heterozygous substitution in the PRKN gene in the presence of the variants +2/+2 or +2/+3 of NACP-Rep1 in the SNCA promoter, may increase the risk of PD manifestation, which is probably due to ineffective elimination of over-expressed ASN by the mutated Parkin protein. Finally, it seems that genetic testing may be an important part of diagnostics in patients with PD and may improve the prognostic process in the course of PD. However, only full knowledge of the mechanism of the interaction between the genes associated with the pathogenesis of PD is likely to help explain the currently unknown pathways of selective damage to dopaminergic neurons in the course of PD.Current Genomics 12/2013; 14(8):502-17. · 2.87 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Homozygous or compound heterozygous mutations in the phosphatase and tensin homolog-induced putative kinase 1 (PINK1) gene are causative of autosomal recessive, early onset Parkinson's disease. Single heterozygous mutations have been detected repeatedly both in a subset of patients and in unaffected individuals, and the significance of these mutations has long been debated. Several neurophysiological studies from non-manifesting PINK1 heterozygotes have demonstrated the existence of neural plasticity abnormalities, indicating the presence of specific endophenotypic traits in the heterozygous state. We performed a functional analysis of corticostriatal synaptic plasticity in heterozygous PINK1 knockout (PINK1(+/-) ) mice using a multidisciplinary approach and observed that, despite normal motor behavior, repetitive activation of cortical inputs to striatal neurons failed to induce long-term potentiation (LTP), whereas long-term depression was normal. Although nigral dopaminergic neurons exhibited normal morphological and electrophysiological properties with normal responses to dopamine receptor activation, a significantly lower dopamine release was measured in the striatum of PINK1(+/-) mice compared with control mice, suggesting that a decrease in stimulus-evoked dopamine overflow acts as a major determinant for the LTP deficit. Accordingly, pharmacological agents capable of increasing the availability of dopamine in the synaptic cleft restored normal LTP in heterozygous mice. Moreover, monoamine oxidase B inhibitors rescued physiological LTP and normal dopamine release. Our results provide novel evidence for striatal plasticity abnormalities, even in the heterozygous disease state. These alterations might be considered an endophenotype to this monogenic form of Parkinson's disease and a valid tool with which to characterize early disease stage and design possible disease-modifying therapies. © 2013 International Parkinson and Movement Disorder Society.Movement Disorders 10/2013; · 5.63 Impact Factor