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Neurology AND Movement disorders [keywords]
- Factor analysis of the Hamilton Depression Rating Scale in Parkinson's disease. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Parkinsonism Relat Disord 2014 Nov 29.
Several studies have validated the Hamilton Depression Rating Scale (HAMD) in patients with Parkinson's disease (PD), and reported adequate reliability and construct validity. However, the factorial validity of the HAMD has not yet been investigated. The aim of our analysis was to explore the factor structure of the HAMD in a large sample of PD patients.A principal component analysis of the 17-item HAMD was performed on data of 341 PD patients, available from a previous cross sectional study on anxiety. An eigenvalue ≥1 was used to determine the number of factors. Factor loadings ≥0.4 in combination with oblique rotations were used to identify which variables made up the factors. Kaiser-Meyer-Olkin measure (KMO), Cronbach's alpha, Bartlett's test, communality, percentage of non-redundant residuals and the component correlation matrix were computed to assess factor validity.KMO verified the sample's adequacy for factor analysis and Cronbach's alpha indicated a good internal consistency of the total scale. Six factors had eigenvalues ≥1 and together explained 59.19% of the variance. The number of items per factor varied from 1 to 6. Inter-item correlations within each component were low. There was a high percentage of non-redundant residuals and low communality.This analysis demonstrates that the factorial validity of the HAMD in PD is unsatisfactory. This implies that the scale is not appropriate for studying specific symptom domains of depression based on factorial structure in a PD population.
- Aging increases flexibility of postural reactive responses based on constraints imposed by a manual task. [Journal Article]
- Front Aging Neurosci 2014.:327.
This study compared the effect of stability constraints imposed by a manual task on the adaptation of postural responses between 16 healthy elderly (mean age = 71.56 years, SD = 7.38) and 16 healthy young (mean age = 22.94 years, SD = 4.82) individuals. Postural stability was perturbed through unexpected release of a load attached to the participant's trunk while performing two versions of a voluntary task: holding a tray with a cylinder placed with its flat side down (low constraint) or with its rolling round side down (high constraint). Low and high constraint tasks were performed in alternate blocks of trials. Results showed that young participants adapted muscular activation and kinematics of postural responses in association with previous experience with the first block of manual task constraint, whereas the elderly modulated postural responses based on the current manual constraint. This study provides evidence for flexibility of postural strategies in the elderly to deal with constraints imposed by a manual task.
- Bottlenecks to clinical translation of direct brain-computer interfaces. [Journal Article]
- Front Syst Neurosci 2014.:226.
Despite several decades of research into novel brain-implantable devices to treat a range of diseases, only two-cochlear implants for sensorineural hearing loss and deep brain stimulation for movement disorders-have yielded any appreciable clinical benefit. Obstacles to translation include technical factors (e.g., signal loss due to gliosis or micromotion), lack of awareness of current clinical options for patients that the new therapy must outperform, traversing between federal and corporate funding needed to support clinical trials, and insufficient management expertise. This commentary reviews these obstacles preventing the translation of promising new neurotechnologies into clinical application and suggests some principles that interdisciplinary teams in academia and industry could adopt to enhance their chances of success.
- Spasticity and intrathecal baclofen. [Journal Article]
- Semin Neurol 2014 Nov; 34(5):591-6.
Severe spastic tone and/or spastic hypertonia can be the most disabling consequences of a neurologic insult, resulting from an excess of muscle tone. Baclofen, a GABA-B agonist, is one of the most widely used drugs in treating abnormal or disabling spastic tone. However, the effectiveness of baclofen taken orally is often limited by its systemic side effects, including sedation, confusion, and lethargy. Intrathecal baclofen (ITB) delivered by an implanted catheter can work directly at the spinal cord level to reduce spastic tone through presynaptic inhibition. Several decades after Penn and Kroin (1984) proved that continuous infusion of intrathecal baclofen reduced spinal cord spasticity, numerous studies have demonstrated the benefits of ITB therapy and proven its effectiveness in modulating and reducing spastic tone. In this article the authors review current methods of management with ITB therapy; summarize the current knowledge, controversies, and available scientific literature; illustrate through different clinical cases treatment strategies and their outcomes; and lastly, provide a synopsis of current clinical practice in ITB therapy with insights into new therapeutic developments.
- What is the best initial treatment in Parkinson's disease? [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- J R Coll Physicians Edinb 2014 Dec; 44(4):291-292.
No abstract available.
- Modelling the natural history of Huntington's disease progression. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- J Neurol Neurosurg Psychiatry 2014 Dec 16.
The lack of reliable biomarkers to track disease progression is a major problem in clinical research of chronic neurological disorders. Using Huntington's disease (HD) as an example, we describe a novel approach to model HD and show that the progression of a neurological disorder can be predicted for individual patients.Starting with an initial cohort of 343 patients with HD that we have followed since 1995, we used data from 68 patients that satisfied our filtering criteria to model disease progression, based on the Unified Huntington's Disease Rating Scale (UHDRS), a measure that is routinely used in HD clinics worldwide.Our model was validated by: (A) extrapolating our equation to model the age of disease onset, (B) testing it on a second patient data set by loosening our filtering criteria, (C) cross-validating with a repeated random subsampling approach and (D) holdout validating with the latest clinical assessment data from the same cohort of patients. With UHDRS scores from the past four clinical visits (over a minimum span of 2 years), our model predicts disease progression of individual patients over the next 2 years with an accuracy of 89-91%. We have also provided evidence that patients with similar baseline clinical profiles can exhibit very different trajectories of disease progression.This new model therefore has important implications for HD research, most obviously in the development of potential disease-modifying therapies. We believe that a similar approach can also be adapted to model disease progression in other chronic neurological disorders.
- Stiff-person syndrome: insights into a complex autoimmune disorder. [REVIEW]
- J Neurol Neurosurg Psychiatry 2014 Dec 15.
Stiff-person syndrome (SPS) is characterised by progressive rigidity and muscle spasms affecting the axial and limb muscles. Since its initial description in 1956, marked progress has been made in the clinical characterisation, understanding of pathogenesis and therapy of this disorder. SPS can be classified according to the clinical presentation into classic SPS and SPS variants: focal or segmental-SPS, jerking-SPS and progressive encephalomyelitis with rigidity and myoclonus. Most patients with SPS have antibodies directed against the glutamic acid decarboxylase, the rate-limiting enzyme for the production of the inhibitory neurotransmitter γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA). Antibodies directed against GABAA receptor-associated protein, and the glycine-α1 receptor can also be observed. Paraneoplastic SPS is commonly associated with antiamphiphysin antibodies and breast cancer. Treatment of SPS with drugs that increase the GABAergic tone combined with immunotherapy can improve the neurological manifestations of these patients. The prognosis, however, is unpredictable and spontaneous remissions are unlikely.
- Distinguishing idiopathic Parkinson's disease from other parkinsonian syndromes by breath test. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Parkinsonism Relat Disord 2014 Dec 9.
Diagnosis of different parkinsonian syndromes is linked with high misdiagnosis rates and various confounding factors. This is particularly problematic in its early stages. With this in mind, the current pilot study aimed to distinguish between Idiopathic Parkinson's Disease (iPD), other Parkinsonian syndromes (non-iPD) and healthy subjects, by a breath test that analyzes the exhaled volatile organic compounds using a highly sensitive nanoarray.Breath samples of 44 iPD, 16 non-iPD patients and 37 healthy controls were collected. The samples were passed over a nanoarray and the resulting electrical signals were analyzed with discriminant factor analysis as well as by a K-fold cross-validation method, to test the accuracy of the model.Comparison of non-iPD with iPD states yielded 88% sensitivity, 88% accuracy, and 88% Receiver Operating Characteristic area under the curve in the training set samples with known identity. The validation set of this comparison scored 81% sensitivity and accuracy and 92% negative predictive value. Comparison between atypical parkinsonism states and healthy subjects scored 94% sensitivity and 85% accuracy in the training set samples with known identity. The validation set of this comparison scored 81% sensitivity and 78% accuracy. The obtained results were not affected by l-Dopa or MAO-B inhibitor treatment.Exhaled breath analysis with nanoarray is a promising approach for a non-invasive, inexpensive, and portable technique for differentiation between different Parkinsonian states. A larger cohort is required in order to establish the clinical usefulness of the method.
- Evolution of Prodromal Clinical Markers of Parkinson Disease in a GBA Mutation-Positive Cohort. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- JAMA Neurol 2014 Dec 15.
Numerically, the most important genetic risk factor for the development of Parkinson disease (PD) is the presence of a glucocerebrosidase gene (GBA) mutation.To evaluate longitudinally and clinically a GBA mutation-positive cohort and the evolution of the prodromal features of PD.Participants in a study of the etiology and prodrome of PD were reevaluated in this clinic-based 2-year follow-up report. Patients with type 1 Gaucher disease (GD) and heterozygous GBA mutation carriers were recruited in 2010 from the Lysosomal Storage Disorder Unit at the Royal Free Hospital, London, England. Thirty patients who previously received a diagnosis of type 1 GD, 28 heterozygous GBA mutation carriers, and 26 genetically unrelated controls were included. Exclusion criteria included a diagnosis of PD or dementia for both the patients with GD and the GBA mutation carriers and any existing neurological disease for the controls.Assessment was performed for clinical markers using standardized scales for hyposmia, rapid eye movement sleep behavior disorder, depression, autonomic dysfunction, cognitive function, and parkinsonian motor signs (using the Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale motor subscale [UPDRS part III]).Over 2 years, depression scores were significantly worse for heterozygous carriers (mean baseline, 0.65; mean follow-up, 2.88; P = .01), rapid eye movement sleep behavior disorder scores were significantly worse for patients with GD (mean baseline, 0.93; mean follow-up, 2.93; P < .001) and heterozygotes (mean baseline, 0.10; mean follow-up, 2.30; P < .001), and UPDRS part III scores were significantly worse for patients with GD (mean baseline, 4.29; mean follow-up, 7.82; P < .001) and heterozygotes (mean baseline, 1.97; mean follow-up, 4.50; P < .001). For controls, there was a small but significant deterioration in the UPDRS part II (activities of daily living) score (mean baseline, 0.00; mean follow-up, 0.58; P = .006). At 2 years, olfactory and cognitive assessment scores were lower in patients with GD and heterozygotes compared with controls, but they did not differ significantly from baseline. When the results from the patients with GD and the heterozygotes were combined, a significant deterioration from baseline was observed, as reflected in the Rapid Eye Movement Sleep Behaviour Disorder Questionnaire (mean baseline, 0.51; mean follow-up, 2.63; P < .001), Beck Depression Inventory (mean baseline, 1.72; mean follow-up, 4.44; P = .002), and UPDRS part II (mean baseline, 0.88; mean follow-up, 2.01; P < .001) and part III scores (mean baseline, 3.09; mean follow-up, 6.10; P < .001) (all P < .01), and at 2 years, significant differences in University of Pennsylvania Smell Identification Test, Unified Multiple System Atrophy Rating Scale, Mini-Mental State Examination, Montreal Cognitive Assessment, and UPDRS part II and part III scores were observed between patients with GD/heterozygotes and controls (all P < .05).This study indicates that, as a group, GBA mutation-positive individuals show a deterioration in clinical markers consistent with the prodrome of PD. Within this group of individual, 10% appear to be evolving at a more rapid rate.
- Frequency of Cholinergic and Caudate Nucleus Dopaminergic Deficits Across the Predemented Cognitive Spectrum of Parkinson Disease and Evidence of Interaction Effects. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- JAMA Neurol 2014 Dec 15.
Little is known about the relative contributions of multisystem degenerative processes across the spectrum of predemented cognitive decline in Parkinson disease (PD).To investigate the relative frequency of caudate nucleus dopaminergic and forebrain cholinergic deficits across a spectrum of cognitively impaired patients with PD to explore their relative, individual, and combined contributions to cognitive impairment in PD.A cross-sectional study at an academic movement disorders clinic that included a predominantly nondemented cohort of 143 patients with PD. The mean (SD) age of patients was 65.5 (7.4) years and the mean (SD) Hoehn and Yahr stage was 2.4 (0.6).Binary classification of carbon 11-labeled [11C]PMP acetylcholinesterase and caudate nucleus [11C]DTBZ monoaminergic positron-emission tomography imaging based on normative data. The frequency of significant degenerative processes based on normative values was determined for consecutive intervals of cognitive impairment, ranging from no or minimal (z > -0.5) to more severe (z ≤ -2) cognitive impairment.Across the spectrum from minimal (z > -0.5) to more severe (z ≤ -2) global cognitive impairment scores, caudate nucleus dopaminergic denervation was relatively frequent in individuals with minimal or no cognitive changes (51.1%) and increased in patients with more severe cognitive impairments (χ2 = 12.8; P = .01). Cortical cholinergic denervation frequency increased monotonically with increasing cognitive impairment from 24.7% (z > -0.5) to 85.7% (z ≤ -2); χ2 = 23.2; P = .001). Eighty-seven percent of patients with neocortical cholinergic deficits had caudate nucleus dopaminergic deficits. Multiple regression analysis (F = 7.51; P < .001) showed both independent cognitive predictions for caudate nucleus dopaminergic (F = 7.25; P = .008) and cortical cholinergic (F = 7.50; P = .007) degenerations as well as interaction effects (F = 5.40; P = .02).Cortical cholinergic denervation is a major neurodegeneration associated with progressive declines across the spectrum of cognitive impairment in PD and typically occurs in the context of significant caudate nucleus dopaminergic denervation. Our findings imply that dopaminergic and cholinergic degenerations exhibit both independent and interactive contributions to cognitive impairment in PD.