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Post mortem cerebrospinal fluid α-synuclein levels are raised in multiple system atrophy and distinguish this from the other α-synucleinopathies, Parkinson's disease and Dementia with Lewy bodies

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal article

  • Penny Foulds
  • O Yokota
  • A Thurston
  • Y Davidson
  • Z Ahmed
  • J Holton
  • J C Thompson
  • H Akiyama
  • T Arai
  • M Hasegawa
  • A Gerhard
  • David Allsop
  • D M A Mann
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>01/2012
<mark>Journal</mark>Neurobiology of Disease
Issue number1
Number of pages8
Pages (from-to)188-195
Publication statusPublished
Original languageEnglish


Differentiating clinically between Parkinson's disease (PD) and the atypical parkinsonian syndromes of Progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP), corticobasal syndrome (CBS) and multiple system atrophy (MSA) is challenging but crucial for patient management and recruitment into clinical trials. Because PD (and the related disorder Dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB)) and MSA are characterised by the deposition of aggregated forms of α-synuclein protein (α-syn) in the brain, whereas CBS and PSP are tauopathies, we have developed immunoassays to detect levels of total and oligomeric forms of α-syn, and phosphorylated and phosphorylated oligomeric forms of α-syn, within body fluids, in an attempt to find a biomarker that will differentiate between these disorders. Levels of these 4 different forms of α-syn were measured in post mortem samples of ventricular cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) obtained from 76 patients with PD, DLB, PSP or MSA, and in 20 healthy controls. Mean CSF levels of total and oligomeric α-syn, and phosphorylated α-syn, did not vary significantly between the diagnostic groups, whereas mean CSF levels of phosphorylated oligomeric α-syn did differ significantly (p