Background: Both Parkinson's disease (PD) and multiple system atrophy (MSA) are neurodegenerative disorder affecting striatonigral system. Although various lines of evidence demonstrate that dopaminergic neuron degeneration emerges before the onset of motor symptoms in PD, preclinical/prodromal progression of neurodegeneration is far less understood in MSA. Objective: The aim of this study was to clarify the difference in the progression of dopaminergic degeneration in MSA and PD using dopamine transporter single-photon emission computed tomography (DAT SPECT). Methods: We analyzed longitudinal data of the specific binding ratio (SBR), a measure of striatal radiotracer uptake, in DAT SPECT from 7 patients with MSA-C, 5 patients with MSA-P, and 18 patients with PD. We performed 2.7±0.7 scans with an interval of 9.85±6.00 months for MSA and 2 scans with an interval of 2.16±0.16 years for PD. Results: The rate of SBR decline was faster in both subtypes of MSA compared with PD, but the value was similar between MSA-P and MSA-C. The estimated SBR at the onset of initial motor symptoms was lower in PD and MSA-P than in MSA-C, especially in the predominantly affected side. SBR of the predominantly affected side starts to decrease before the onset of motor symptoms in PD and MSA-P, whereas the initiation of SBR decline is around the onset in MSA-C individuals. The decline of SBR in the less affected side was not clearly shown before the onset in MSA-P or MSA-C. Conclusions: Our results suggest that the SBR in DAT SPECT analysis is an important pathophysiological marker reflecting the disease-and subtype-specific progression of dopaminergic degeneration in MSA and PD.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Clinical Neurology
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience