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Immunology, Autoimmunity, and Autoantibodies in Parkinson’s Disease


Recent revelations of immune alterations in Parkinson’s disease have led to the convergence that an autoimmune mechanism may play a role in the etiopathogenesis of this neurodegenerative disease. In the current study, 77 Parkinson’s disease patients and 77 matched healthy controls were analyzed for the presence of seven autoantibodies previously found to be associated with central nervous system manifestations namely: antineuronal-cells, anti-brain lysate, anti-dsDNA, anti-phosphatidylserine, anti-cardiolipin, anti-serotonin, and anti-melanocytes antibodies. Patients underwent systematic assessments of demographics, clinical, and biochemical manifestations. Three autoantibodies were found to be more prevalent among Parkinson’s disease patients (antineuronal cells10.3% vs. 1.3%, p = 0.017; anti-brain lysate 9.1% vs. 1.3%, p = 0.032; anti-dsDNA 10.3% vs. 2.6%, p = 0.049). Clinical manifestations of Parkinson’s disease, particularly dyskinesia and depression, were found to be associated with the presence of these autoantibodies.

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This study was performed as part of the requirements for the M.D degree of the student Michal Benkler form the Medical school, Faculty of Health Sciences, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Beer-Sheba, Israel.

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Correspondence to Yehuda Shoenfeld.

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Michal Benkler and Nancy Agmon-Levin contributed to the article equally.

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Benkler, M., Agmon-Levin, N., Hassin-Baer, S. et al. Immunology, Autoimmunity, and Autoantibodies in Parkinson’s Disease. Clinic Rev Allerg Immunol 42, 164–171 (2012).

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  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Autoimmune
  • Autoantibodies
  • Dyskinesia
  • Depression