Search for Biomarkers in ALS and Parkinson's Disease : Positron Emission Tomography and Cerebrospinal Fluid Studies

by Johansson, Anders

Abstract (Summary)

New biomarkers are needed to improve knowledge about pathophysiology, in order to provide earlier correct diagnosis and to follow disease progression of the neurodegenerative diseases amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and Parkinson's disease (PD). The aim of this thesis was to find new biomarkers for these diseases.

First, increased serum levels and unchanged levels in postmortal spinal cord of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) were demonstrated. VEGF was not detected in cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) in ALS. Second, increased levels of fibroblast growth factor 2 were found in the CSF and serum of ALS patients. Both studies used enzyme-linked immunoassays. Third, a proteomics method for CSF analysis was explored, based on tryptic digestion and subsequent separation and detection of the peptides by on-line liquid chromatography-Fourier transform ion cyclotron resonance mass spectrometry. ALS-specific patterns were observed. Four out of five samples were correctly assigned, but no single protein biomarker could be identified. Fourth, [11C](L)-deprenyl-D2 (DED) positron emission tomography (PET) demonstrated increased retention in the pons and white matter in ALS. DED binds to monoamino oxidase B, which in the brain is primarily located in astrocytes. Thus evidence was provided that astrocytosis may be detected in vivo in ALS.

Fifth, normal [11C]-PIB binding in five nondemented patients with PD was reported, in contrast to previous findings of increased retention in Alzheimer's disease reflecting amyloid aggregation. Finally, the combined use of fluorodeoxyglucose and L-[? 11C]-DOPA PET for the differential diagnosis of parkinsonian syndromes was evaluated. PET provided support for the clinical diagnosis in 62 out of 75 patients, and served to exclude suspected diagnoses in another five patients.

Bibliographical Information:


School:Uppsala universitet

School Location:Sweden

Source Type:Doctoral Dissertation

Keywords:MEDICINE; Dermatology and venerology,clinical genetics, internal medicine; Internal medicine; Neurology; amyotrophic lateral sclerosis; ALS; Parkinson’s disease; cerebrospinal fluid; positron emission tomography; vascular endothelial growth factor; fibroblast growth factor 2; proteomics; Fourier transform ion cyclotron resonance mass spectrometry; deprenyl-D2; PIB; FDG; L-[?11C]-DOPA; Neurology; neurologi


Date of Publication:01/01/2009

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