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Journal of Neurology

, Volume 245, Issue 1, pp 14–20 | Cite as

Drug-naive patients with Parkinson’s disease in Hoehn and Yahr stages I and II show a bilateral decrease in striatal dopamine transporters as revealed by [123I]β-CIT SPECT

  • G. Tissingh
  • P. Bergmans
  • J. Booij
  • A. Winogrodzka
  • E. A. van Royen
  • J. C. Stoof
  • E. C. Wolters
Original communication

Abstract

Ten healthy subjects and 16 patients with early Parkinson’s disease (PD) were examined with single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) and [123I]β-CIT, a ligand for the dopamine (DA) transporter. Only drug-naive patients were examined since the expression of and binding to DA transporters may be influenced by dopaminergic medication. The main finding was a significant reduction in [123I]β-CIT binding in the ipsi- and contralateral striatal regions, especially in the putamen, which showed a mean reduction of 65% of the control mean. Discriminant function analysis of the putaminal [123I]β-CIT binding measures classified 100% of the cases in the correct group. Disease severity correlated negatively and highly significantly with the binding measures. Tremor ratings did not correlate with the SPECT measures, whereas rigidity, and to a lesser extent bradykinesia, did. Patients with unilateral PD showed a bilateral loss of striatal DA transporters. Our findings indicate that with [123I]β-CIT SPECT it is possible to diagnose PD in subjects with very mild symptoms and signs. Moreover, finding a bilateral loss of striatal DA transporters in patients with unilateral PD also suggests that it may be possible to identify subjects in the preclinical phase of the disease.

Key words Parkinson’s disease SPECT Dopamine transporter Cocaine analogues 

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1998

Authors and Affiliations

  • G. Tissingh
    • 1
  • P. Bergmans
    • 1
  • J. Booij
    • 2
  • A. Winogrodzka
    • 1
  • E. A. van Royen
    • 2
  • J. C. Stoof
    • 1
  • E. C. Wolters
    • 1
  1. 1.Academisch Ziekenhuis Vrije Universiteit, Department of Neurology, De Boelelaan 1117, 1081 HV Amsterdam, The Netherlands Tel.: +31-20 4442997, Fax: +31-20 4442800NL
  2. 2.Graduate School for Neurosciences Amsterdam, Department of Nuclear Medicine, Academic Medical Centre, University of Amsterdam, The NetherlandsNL

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