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Mov Disord. 1988;3(4):300-12.

Neurochemical findings in neuroacanthocytosis.

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Departamento de InvestigacĂ­on, Centro Ramon y Cajal, Madrid, Spain.


We performed a neurochemical study of the brain of two unrelated patients, living in different continents, with neuroacanthocytosis. The levels of monoamines and their metabolites, gamma-aminobutyric acid and substance P, were measured in several brain areas and the monoamine metabolites in cerebrospinal fluid. The binding of 3H-spiperone to striatal membranes and to lymphocytes was also measured. Both patients had a progressive neurological disorder with onset in the third decade of life and characterized by a complex movement disorder, epilepsy, muscular wasting, and changes in behavior. The movement disorder initially manifested with oromandibular dystonia and limb chorea, but at the time of death was characterized by a severe dystonic syndrome. The chemical changes were similar in the two patients. The most important neurochemical findings were a depletion of dopamine and its metabolites in most brain areas, most notably in the striatum, and elevation of norepinephrine levels in the putamen and globus pallidus. Substance P was markedly reduced in the striatum and substantia nigra. Our findings may provide clues to the neurochemical mechanisms underlying dystonia.

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