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Brain Nerve. 2012 Apr;64(4):403-12.

[The clinical significance of MIBG myocardial scintigraphy in Parkinson disease].

[Article in Japanese]

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Department of Neurology, Kanto Central Hospital, Setagaya-ku, Tokyo, Japan.


Meta-iodobenzylguanidine (MIBG) myocardial scintigraphy can assess postganglionic presynaptic cardiac sympathetic nerve endings. Reduced cardiac MIBG uptake on MIBG myocardial scintigraphy has been reported in patients with Parkinson disease (PD), dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB), pure autonomic failure (PAF), and familial PD linked to SNCA duplication. This imaging procedure is a sensitive diagnostic tool that might differentiate PD and DLB from other movement disorders from Alzheimer disease (AD). We recently reported cardiac sympathetic denervation in PD, DLB, PAF, and familial PD linked to SNCA duplication which accounts for the reduced cardiac MIBG uptake in these disorders. The patients with PD, DLB, PAF and familial PD linked to SNCA duplication have Lewy bodies in the nervous system, whereas patients with multiple system atrophy (MSA), progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP), corticobasal degeneration, AD, and parkin-associated PD do not. However, in patients with MSA or PSP, cardiac sympathetic denervation was associated with the presence of Lewy bodies in the nervous system. Therefore, cardiac sympathetic denervation is closely related to the presence of Lewy bodies in the wide range of neurodegenerative processes. Thus, we conclude that reduced cardiac MIBG uptake is a potential biomarker for the presence of Lewy bodies in the nervous system. We infer that MIBG myocardial scintigraphy is a noninvasive tool for detecting Lewy bodies during life.

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