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Curr Opin Neurol. 2013 Aug;26(4):339-44. doi: 10.1097/WCO.0b013e328363304c.

Affective disorders in Parkinson's disease.

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  • 1Morton and Gloria Shulman Movement Disorder Unit & E.J. Safra Parkinson Disease Program, Toronto Western Hospital, UHN, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.



This review explores recent literature pertaining to affective disorders associated with Parkinson's disease.


Nonmotor symptoms including affective disorders are becoming more widely recognized as complications of Parkinson's disease. As awareness of these symptoms increases, and new neuroimaging tools are developed and become more accessible, more studies are being conducted pertaining to behavioral complications in Parkinson's disease. The functional connectivity of the basal ganglia can predispose people with Parkinson's to develop affective disorders. Furthermore, dopaminergic treatments may exacerbate or trigger behavioral symptoms. It is now understood that changes associated with Parkinson's disease are widespread, affecting striatal and extrastriatal regions and resulting in alterations in gray matter, white matter, blood flow, metabolism, and dopaminergic and serotonergic function.


Neuroimaging is advancing our knowledge of the mechanisms involved in Parkinson's disease, and their role in the development of behavioral disorders. An increased understanding of these disorders may lead to the discovery of new therapeutic targets, or the identification of risk factors for the development of these disorders. If preventive therapies become available, identification of risk factors will be important for the identification and treatment of susceptible individuals.

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