Tau protein and beta- amyloid(1-42) CSF levels in different phenotypes of Parkinson's disease

Department of Neurology, Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry, Palacky University in Olomouc, University Hospital Olomouc, I.P. Pavlova 6, 775 20 Olomouc, Czech Republic.
Journal of Neural Transmission (Impact Factor: 2.4). 09/2011; 119(3):353-62. DOI: 10.1007/s00702-011-0708-4
Source: PubMed


Parkinson's disease (PD) is a neurodegenerative disorder with highly heterogeneous clinical manifestations. This fact has prompted many attempts to divide PD patients into clinical subgroups. This could lead to a better recognition of pathogenesis, improving targeted treatment and the prognosis of PD patients. The aim of the present study was to obtain cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) samples in PD patients and to search for a relationship between neurodegenerative CSF markers (tau protein, beta-amyloid(1-42) and index tau protein/beta-amyloid(1-42)) and the clinical subtypes. PD patients were divided into three subgroups: early disease onset (EDO), tremor-dominant PD (TD-PD), and non-tremor dominant PD (NT-PD) according to the previously published classification. Neurodegenerative markers in the CSF were assessed in these three groups of patients suffering from PD (EDO-17, TD-15, NT-16 patients) and in a control group (CG) of 19 patients suffering from non-degenerative neurological diseases and 18 patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD). The NT-PD patients were found to have significantly higher levels of CSF tau protein and index tau/beta than the control subjects and other Parkinsonian subgroups, but no significant differences in these markers were found between AD and NT-PD patients. In the context of more rapid clinical progression and more pronounced neuropathological changes in the NT-PD patient group, our results corroborate the opinion that CSF level of tau protein may be regarded as a potential laboratory marker of the presence and severity of neurodegeneration.

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    ABSTRACT: Genetic, neuropathological and biochemical evidence implicates α-synuclein, a 140 amino acid presynaptic neuronal protein, in the pathogenesis of Parkinson’s disease and other neurodegenerative disorders. The aggregated protein inclusions mainly containing aberrant α-synuclein are widely accepted as morphological hallmarks of α-synucleinopathies, but their composition and location vary between disorders along with neuronal networks affected. α-Synuclein exists physiologically in both soluble and membran-bound states, in unstructured and α-helical conformations, respectively, while posttranslational modifications due to proteostatic deficits are involved in β-pleated aggregation resulting in formation of typical inclusions. The physiological function of α-synuclein and its role linked to neurodegeneration, however, are incompletely understood. Soluble oligomeric, not fully fibrillar α-synuclein is thought to be neurotoxic, main targets might be the synapse, axons and glia. The effects of aberrant α-synuclein include alterations of calcium homeostasis, mitochondrial dysfunction, oxidative and nitric injuries, cytoskeletal effects, and neuroinflammation. Proteasomal dysfunction might be a common mechanism in the pathogenesis of neuronal degeneration in α-synucleinopathies. However, how α-synuclein induces neurodegeneration remains elusive as its physiological function. Genome wide association studies demonstrated the important role for genetic variants of the SNCA gene encoding α-synuclein in the etiology of Parkinson’s disease, possibly through effects on oxidation, mitochondria, autophagy, and lysosomal function. The neuropathology of synucleinopathies and the role of α-synuclein as a potential biomarker are briefly summarized. Although animal models provided new insights into the pathogenesis of Parkinson disease and multiple system atrophy, most of them do not adequately reproduce the cardinal features of these disorders. Emerging evidence, in addition to synergistic interactions of α-synuclein with various pathogenic proteins, suggests that prionlike induction and seeding of α-synuclein could lead to the spread of the pathology and disease progression. Intervention in the early aggregation pathway, aberrant cellular effects, or secretion of α-synuclein might be targets for neuroprotection and disease-modifying therapy.
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    ABSTRACT: CSF biomarker studies were performed in 6 patients each with tremor-dominant (TD) and non-tremor-dominant (NT) Parkinson disease (PD) patients, 27 Alzheimer disease (AD) and 17 age-matched controls. In both NT-PD and AD patients total tau levels and the cortex tau/Aβ-42 were significantly increased compared to both TD-PD patients and controls (p < 0.01). These data in a small cohort confirm previous studies, corroborating the opinion that CSF levels of tau protein and the index total-tau/Aβ-42 may be potential markers of the severity of neurodegeneration in PD.
    No preview · Article · Nov 2011 · Journal of Neural Transmission
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    ABSTRACT: Background In Parkinson's disease (PD), the motor presentation characterised by postural instability/gait difficulties (PIGD) heralds accelerated motor, functional and cognitive decline, as compared with the more benign tremor-dominant (TD) variant. This makes the PIGD complex an attractive target for the discovery of prognostic biomarkers in PD. Objective To explore in vivo whether variability in brain amyloid-β (Aβ) metabolism affects the initial motor presentation in PD. Methods We quantified cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) concentrations and ratios of Aβ42, Aβ40 and Aβ38 using a triplex immunoassay in 99 patients with de novo PD with the PIGD phenotype (n=39) or the TD phenotype (n=60). All patients underwent standardised assessments of motor and neuropsychological function and cerebral MRI. 46 age-matched normal controls served as external reference. Results Patients with PD with the PIGD phenotype had significantly reduced CSF Aβ42, Aβ38, Aβ42/40 and Aβ38/40 levels compared with patients with the TD phenotype and controls. CSF marker levels in patients with PD-TD did not differ from those in controls. Multivariate regression models demonstrated significant associations of CSF Aβ markers with severity of PIGD and lower limb bradykinesia in patients with PD, independently from age, MRI white matter hyperintensities and cognition. No associations were found between CSF markers and other motor features. Conclusions Motor heterogeneity in de novo PD independently relates to CSF Aβ markers, with low levels found in patients with the PIGD presentation. This suggests that disturbed Aβ metabolism has an effect on PD beyond cognition and may contribute to the variable rate of motor and functional decline in PD.
    No preview · Article · Oct 2012 · Journal of neurology, neurosurgery, and psychiatry
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