Locus Coeruleus Degeneration Correlated with Levodopa Resistance in Parkinson's Disease: A Retrospective Analysis.

Journal of Parkinson's Disease
Cheng ZhouMinming Zhang


The widely divergent responsiveness of Parkinson's disease (PD) patients to levodopa is an important clinical issue because of its relationship with quality of life and disease prognosis. Preliminary animal experiments have suggested that degeneration of the locus coeruleus (LC) attenuates the efficacy of levodopa treatment. To explore the relationship between LC degeneration and levodopa responsiveness in PD patients in vivo. Neuromelanin-sensitive magnetic resonance imaging (NM-MRI), a good indicator of LC and substantia nigra (SN) degeneration, and levodopa challenge tests were conducted in 57 PD patients. Responsiveness to levodopa was evaluated by the rates of change of the Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale Part III score and somatomotor network synchronization calculated from resting-state functional MRI before and after levodopa administration. Next, we assessed the relationship between the contrast-to-noise ratio of LC (CNRLC) and levodopa responsiveness. Multiple linear regression analysis was conducted to rule out the potential influence of SN degeneration on levodopa responsiveness. A significant positive correlation was found between CNRLC and the motor improvement after levodopa administration (R = 0.421, p ...Continue Reading


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