, Volume 10, Issue 6, pp 423-430
Date: 01 Sep 2010

Biomarkers in Parkinson’s Disease

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Abstract

Biomarkers are objectively measured characteristics that are indicators of normal biological processes, pathogenic processes, or responses to therapeutic interventions. To date, clinical assessment remains the gold standard in the diagnosis of Parkinson’s disease (PD) and clinical rating scales are well established as the gold standard for tracking progression of PD. Researchers have identified numerous potential biomarkers that may aid in the differential diagnosis of PD and/or tracking disease progression. Clinical, genetic, blood and cerebrospinal fluid (proteomics, transcriptomics, metabolomics), and neuroimaging biomarkers may provide useful tools in the diagnosis of PD and in measuring disease progression and response to therapies. Some potential biomarkers are inexpensive and do not require much technical expertise, whereas others are expensive or require specialized equipment and technical skills. Many potential biomarkers in PD show great promise; however, they need to be assessed for their sensitivity and specificity over time in large and varied samples of patients with and without PD.