Acta Neuropathologica

, Volume 99, Issue 4, pp 376–384

Neuronal damage of the substantia nigra in HIV-1 infected brains

  • K. Itoh
  • P. Mehraein
  • S. Weis
Regular paper

DOI: 10.1007/s004010051139

Cite this article as:
Itoh, K., Mehraein, P. & Weis, S. Acta Neuropathol (2000) 99: 376. doi:10.1007/s004010051139
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Abstract

Extrapyramidal motor disorders are frequently noted in HIV-1-infected patients. In the present study, the substantia nigra was analyzed morphometrically to detect neuronal changes which might contribute to the pathogenetic mechanisms causing extrapyramidal motor dysfunction in HIV-1-infected patients. The numerical density and the size of pigmented, non-pigmented small, and non-pigmented large neurons in four nuclei of the substantia nigra pars compacta (antero-medial, antero-intermediolateral, postero-lateral, and postero-medial nuclei) in HIV-1-infected patients and in age-matched normal controls were determined. In HIV-1-infected brains, the numerical density of total neurons (i.e., pigmented and non-pigmented) as well as of pigmented neurons was significantly decreased, whereas that of non-pigmented neurons was not significantly changed in all investigated nuclei of the substantia nigra as compared to normal controls. A specific pattern of increase and decrease of non-pigmented large and non-pigmented small neurons was observed. The size of total neurons (pigmented and non-pigmented neurons) and of pigmented neurons was significantly reduced in all investigated nuclei of HIV-1-infected brains. The results suggest that neuronal degeneration in the substantia nigra commonly occurs and may be related to extrapyramidal symptoms in HIV-1-infected patients.

Key words Substantia nigra Extrapyramidal motor ¶disorders Neuronal loss HIV-1 infection Morphometry 

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2000

Authors and Affiliations

  • K. Itoh
    • 1
  • P. Mehraein
    • 1
  • S. Weis
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of Neuropathology, Ludwig-Maximilians-University, Munich, GermanyDE
  2. 2.Institute of Neuropathology, Otto-von-Guericke University, Leipziger Strasse 44, 39120 Magdeburg, Germany e-mail: serge.weis@medizin.uni-magdeburg.de, Tel.: +49-391-6715814, Fax: +49-391-6713300DE

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