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Neuro-degenerative Diseases

Woong-Woo Lee, Eun Jin Yoon, Jee-Young Lee, Sun-Won Park, Yu Kyeong Kim
BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: The incidence of visual hallucination (VH) increases with Parkinson's disease (PD) progression, and its development is thought to be related to a specific neurodegenerative process in PD. This study aimed to reveal brain degeneration related to VH in PD by analyzing neuroimaging data obtained from patients in their different stages of PD. METHODS: Data from 48 PD patients - 21 nondemented without VH (PNV group), 10 nondemented with VH (PV group), and 17 demented with VH (PVD group) - and 30 age-matched healthy controls (HC group) were analyzed...
October 20, 2016: Neuro-degenerative Diseases
Carlo Wilke, Frank Gillardon, Christian Deuschle, Markus A Hobert, Iris E Jansen, Florian G Metzger, Peter Heutink, Thomas Gasser, Walter Maetzler, Cornelis Blauwendraat, Matthis Synofzik
BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVE: Reduced progranulin levels are a hallmark of frontotemporal dementia (FTD) caused by loss-of-function (LoF) mutations in the progranulin gene (GRN). However, alterations of central nervous progranulin expression also occur in neurodegenerative disorders unrelated to GRN mutations, such as Alzheimer's disease. We hypothesised that central nervous progranulin levels are also reduced in GRN-negative FTD. METHODS: Progranulin levels were determined in both cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) and serum in 75 subjects (37 FTD patients and 38 controls)...
October 20, 2016: Neuro-degenerative Diseases
Moran Frenkel-Pinter, Sharon Tal, Roni Scherzer-Attali, Malak Abu-Hussien, Idan Alyagor, Tal Eisenbaum, Ehud Gazit, Daniel Segal
Alzheimer's disease (AD) is the most abundant tauopathy and is characterized by Aβ-derived plaques and tau-derived tangles, resulting from the unfolding of the corresponding monomeric subunits into ordered β-sheet oligomers and fibrils. Intervening in the toxic aggregation process is a promising therapeutic approach, but, to date, a disease-modifying therapy is neither available for AD nor for other tauopathies. Along these lines, we have previously demonstrated that a small naphthoquinone-tryptophan hybrid, termed NQTrp, is an effective modulator of tauopathy in vitro and in vivo...
October 20, 2016: Neuro-degenerative Diseases
Massimiliano Godani, Marco Zoccarato, Alessandro Beronio, Luigi Zuliani, Luana Benedetti, Bruno Giometto, Massimo Del Sette, Elisa Raggio, Roberta Baldi, Angela Vincent
BACKGROUND: The spectrum of autoimmune neurological diseases associated with voltage-gated potassium channel (VGKC)-complex antibodies (Abs) ranges from peripheral nerve disorders to limbic encephalitis. Recently, low titers of VGKC-complex Abs have also been reported in neurodegenerative disorders, but their clinical relevance is unknown. OBJECTIVE: The aim of the study was to explore the prevalence of VGKC-complex Abs in slow-progression motor neuron disease (MND)...
October 7, 2016: Neuro-degenerative Diseases
Shanmukha Shruthi, R Sumitha, Anu Mary Varghese, S Ashok, B K Chandrasekhar Sagar, T N Sathyaprabha, A Nalini, Boris W Kramer, Trichur R Raju, K Vijayalakshmi, Phalguni Anand Alladi
BACKGROUND: The survival of motor neurons is dependent upon neurotrophic factors both during childhood and adolescence and during adult life. In disease conditions, such as in patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), the mRNA levels of trophic factors like brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1), fibroblast growth factor-2 (FGF-2), and vascular endothelial growth factor are downregulated. This was replicated in our in vivo experimental system following the injection of cerebral spinal fluid (CSF) of sporadic ALS (ALS-CSF) patients...
September 13, 2016: Neuro-degenerative Diseases
Minho Hwang, Hyunwoo Yang, Younsoo Kim, Jinyoung Youn, Jongkyu Park, Young Eun Huh, Hee-Tae Kim, Jin Whan Cho
AIMS: To elucidate different patterns of progression of midbrain atrophy in patients with Richardson's syndrome (RS), progressive supranuclear palsy-parkinsonism (PSP-P), and Parkinson's disease (PD) using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)-based visual rating indexes. METHODS: We recruited 12 patients with PSP-RS, 12 with PSP-P, and 23 with PD for whom MRIs had been followed up for at least 2 years (mean ± SD, 4.9 ± 1.6 years) after the initial MRI. MRI-based visual rating indexes were used to estimate midbrain atrophy, including the ratio of the pontine to midbrain tegmental areas (P/M ratio) on a midsagittal image, the length between the interpeduncular fossa and the center of the cerebral aqueduct at the midmammillary-body level (MTEGM) on axial images, and the morning glory sign...
September 10, 2016: Neuro-degenerative Diseases
Allison K Graebner, Daniel Tarsy, Ludy C Shih, Veronique Vanderhorst, Omesh Kulkarni, Scott Kaplan, David K Simon
BACKGROUND/AIMS: The clinical diagnosis of degenerative forms of parkinsonism is imperfect, with past studies reporting a high rate of misdiagnosis by neurologists and movement disorder specialists, particularly early in the disease course. 123I-ioflupane SPECT (DaTscan) is a diagnostic neuroimaging tool used to distinguish essential tremor from tremor due to degenerative parkinsonisms. The present study expands upon prior studies of the clinical impact of DaTscan imaging in movement disorder centers by assessing quantitative estimates of diagnostic certainty, the impact on subsequent clinical decisions, and the degree to which the asymmetry in the results corresponds to laterality by clinical history and examination...
September 10, 2016: Neuro-degenerative Diseases
Danuta Z Loesch, Sarah J Annesley, Nicholas Trost, Minh Q Bui, Sui T Lay, Elsdon Storey, Shawn W De Piazza, Oana Sanislav, Lisa M Francione, Eleanor M Hammersley, Flora Tassone, David Francis, Paul R Fisher
BACKGROUND: The need for accessible cellular biomarkers of neurodegeneration in carriers of the fragile X mental retardation 1 (FMR1) premutation (PM) alleles. OBJECTIVE: To assess the mitochondrial status and respiration in blood lymphoblasts from PM carriers manifesting the fragile X-associated tremor/ataxia syndrome (FXTAS) and non-FXTAS carriers, and their relationship with the brain white matter lesions. METHODS: Oxygen consumption rates (OCR) and ATP synthesis using a Seahorse XFe24 Extracellular Flux Analyser, and steady-state parameters of mitochondrial function were assessed in cultured lymphoblasts from 16 PM males (including 11 FXTAS patients) and 9 matched controls...
September 8, 2016: Neuro-degenerative Diseases
Vitaliano Nicola Quaranta, Pierluigi Carratù, Mario Francesco Damiani, Silvano Dragonieri, Alberto Capozzolo, Anna Cassano, Onofrio Resta
BACKGROUND/OBJECTIVE: Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a neurodegenerative disease characterized by the progressive loss of central and peripheral motor neurons. Some studies have found discordant data in the presence of sleep apnea in ALS patients. An obstructive component also occurs with upper airways hypotonia and muscle weakness that may result in an excessive reduction of airway lumen, leading to obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). The aim of this study was to assess the role of obstructive apneic events at disease onset in the ALS prognosis...
September 6, 2016: Neuro-degenerative Diseases
Amaya Rando, Samanta Gasco, Miriam de la Torre, Alberto García-Redondo, Pilar Zaragoza, Janne M Toivonen, Rosario Osta
BACKGROUND: Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) causes loss of upper and lower motor neurons as well as skeletal muscle (SKM) dysfunction and atrophy. SKM is one of the tissues involved in the development of ALS pathology, and studies in a SOD1-G93A mouse model of ALS have demonstrated alterations in SKM degeneration/regeneration marker expression in vivo and defective mutant myoblast proliferation in vitro. Granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (G-CSF) has been shown to alleviate SOD1-G93A pathology...
August 20, 2016: Neuro-degenerative Diseases
Andrea Pilotto, Federica Rossi, Fabrizio Rinaldi, Silvia Compostella, Maura Cosseddu, Barbara Borroni, Massimiliano Filosto, Alessandro Padovani
BACKGROUND: Behavioral and cognitive impairment are common in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and represent a continuum with frontotemporal dementia (FTD). Olfactory dysfunction has been described in a subset of ALS patients and might be associated with frontotemporal and insular cortex dysfunction. OBJECTIVE: To evaluate olfaction dysfunction in ALS patients and its relationship with either cognition or behavioral impairment. METHODS: 28 consecutive ALS patients underwent an extensive cognitive and behavioral battery and were classified as patients with normal cognition (ALS-N, n = 11) or with part of the ALS-FTD spectrum (n = 17), including either cognitive or behavioral impairment or dementia...
2016: Neuro-degenerative Diseases
Esther A H Warnert, Jasper Verbree, Richard G Wise, Matthias J P van Osch
BACKGROUND: Although cerebral arterial stiffness may be an important marker for cerebrovascular health, there is not yet a measurement that accurately reflects the distensibility of major intracranial arteries. Herein, we aim to noninvasively measure distension of the human middle cerebral artery (MCA). METHODS: Ten healthy volunteers (age: 30.3 ± 10.8 years) underwent ultra-high-field (7-tesla) MRI scanning. Time-of-flight angiography and phase-contrast flow imaging were used to locate the M1 segment of the MCA and to determine the occurrence of systole and diastole...
2016: Neuro-degenerative Diseases
Zara A Ioannides, Shyuan T Ngo, Robert D Henderson, Pamela A McCombe, Frederik J Steyn
Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a fatal neurodegenerative disease characterized by the death of motor neurones, which leads to paralysis and death in an average of 3 years following diagnosis. The cause of ALS is unknown, but there is substantial evidence that metabolic factors, including nutritional state and body weight, affect disease progression and survival. This review provides an overview of the characteristics of metabolic dysregulation in ALS focusing on mechanisms that lead to disrupted energy supply (at a whole-body and cellular level) and altered energy expenditure...
2016: Neuro-degenerative Diseases
Armand Savioz, Panteleimon Giannakopoulos, François R Herrmann, William L Klein, Enikö Kövari, Constantin Bouras, Ezio Giacobini
BACKGROUND/AIMS: Investigations of Aβ oligomers in neuropathologically confirmed Alzheimer's disease (AD) are still scarce. We report neurohistopathological and biochemical analyses using antibodies against tau and amyloid β (Aβ) pathology. METHODS: Thirty elderly AD patients and 43 age-matched controls with or without deposition of amyloid plaques (AP) were analyzed by immunohistochemistry. In 21 cases with available fresh tissue, Western blots were also performed...
2016: Neuro-degenerative Diseases
Matthew J Fraidakis, Maura Brunetti, Craig Blackstone, Massimo Filippi, Adriano Chiò
SPG11 belongs to the autosomal recessive hereditary spastic paraplegias (HSP) and presents during childhood or puberty with a complex clinical phenotype encompassing learning difficulties, ataxia, peripheral neuropathy, amyotrophy, and mental retardation. We hereby present the case of a 30-year-old female patient with complex autosomal recessive HSP with thinning of the corpus callosum (TCC) and dementia that was compound heterozygous with two novel mutations in the SPG11 gene. Sequence analysis of the SPG11 gene revealed two novel mutations in a compound heterozygous state in the index patient (c...
2016: Neuro-degenerative Diseases
Joshua T Geiger, Karissa C Arthur, Ted M Dawson, Liana S Rosenthal, Alexander Pantelyat, Marilyn Albert, Argye E Hillis, Barbara Crain, Olga Pletnikova, Juan C Troncoso, Sonja W Scholz
BACKGROUND: Dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB) is the second most common neurodegenerative dementia affecting the elderly. The GGGGCC hexanucleotide expansion mutation at the C9orf72 locus has been identified as a major cause of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and frontotemporal dementia, raising the question of whether this mutation is a factor in DLB. Furthermore, a small number of clinically diagnosed DLB patients have previously been reported to carry the pathologic C9orf72 hexanucleotide repeat expansion...
2016: Neuro-degenerative Diseases
Ilaria Callegari, Chiara Mattei, Francesca Benassi, Frank Krueger, Jordan Grafman, Özgür Yaldizli, Davide Sassos, Davide Massucco, Carlo Scialò, Flavio Nobili, Carlo Serrati, Mario Amore, Leonardo Cocito, Leonardo Emberti Gialloreti, Matteo Pardini
BACKGROUND/AIMS: Apathy is the most common initial symptom of frontotemporal dementia (FTD) and has been linked to frontal-subcortical dopaminergic system dysfunction. No pharmacological therapy has been approved for the treatment of apathy, but, on the basis of its physiopathological mechanism, we suspected that increasing prefrontal dopaminergic innervation could improve this disabling symptom. METHODS: We evaluated a group of 24 nondepressed patients with a diagnosis of the behavioral variant of FTD, in order to determine the effectiveness on apathy of agomelatine, an antidepressant with MT1 and MT2 receptor agonism and 5-HT2C receptor antagonism; the latter leads to an increase in prefrontal dopaminergic and noradrenergic tone...
2016: Neuro-degenerative Diseases
Peng-Hui Yang, Jian-Xiu Zhu, Ya-Dong Huang, Xian-Ying Zhang, Peng Lei, Ashley I Bush, Qi Xiang, Zhi-Jian Su, Qi-Hao Zhang
BACKGROUND: Basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF) has been increasingly investigated due to its neuroprotection in neurodegenerative disorders. Because there are still no cures for any of these disorders, it is crucial to identify new therapeutic targets and screen potential drugs. The increased phosphorylation of tau at Ser396 leads to intracellular tau accumulation, which forms neurofibrillary tangles in Parkinson's disease (PD). In this study, neuroprotection by bFGF was observed, and the mechanisms related to its regulation of phosphorylated tau were investigated...
2016: Neuro-degenerative Diseases
Mingjue Zhao, Caroline G Lee, Hai-Yang Law, Samuel S Chong
BACKGROUND: Accurate determination of the CAG repeat number is crucial for diagnostic and predictive testing for Huntington disease (HD). Current PCR-based assays can accurately size up to ∼110 HTT CAG repeats. OBJECTIVE: To develop an improved assay capable of detecting larger CAG repeat expansions. METHODS: A triplet-primed PCR (TP-PCR) assay was optimized and validated on 14 HD reference DNAs, including a sample carrying a large expansion of ∼180 CAG repeats...
2016: Neuro-degenerative Diseases
Zeeshan Mushtaq, Saumitra Dey Choudhury, Sri Krishna Gangwar, Genny Orso, Vimlesh Kumar
BACKGROUND: Mutations in the human Senataxin (hSETX) gene have been shown to cause two forms of neurodegenerative disorders - a dominant form called amyotrophic lateral sclerosis type 4 (ALS4) and a recessive form called ataxia with oculomotor apraxia type 2 (AOA2). SETX is a putative DNA/RNA helicase involved in RNA metabolism. Although several dominant mutations linked with ALS4 have been identified in SETX, their contribution towards ALS4 pathophysiology is still elusive. METHOD: In order to model ALS4 in Drosophila and to elucidate the morphological, physiological and signalling consequences, we overexpressed the wild-type and pathological forms of hSETX in Drosophila...
2016: Neuro-degenerative Diseases
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