Drop of Nerve protein in MS

Antonelou RC, Emmanouilidou E, Gasparinatos G, Velona T, Voumvourakis KI, Stefanis L. Decreased levels of alpha-synuclein in cerebrospinal fluid of patients with clinically isolated syndrome and multiple sclerosis.J Neurochem. 2015 May 11. doi: 10.1111/jnc.13163. [Epub ahead of print]

Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) α-synuclein (ASYN) levels are emerging as a possible biomarker in a number of neurodegenerative conditions; however, there has been little study of such levels in demyelinating conditions with neurodegeneration such as Multiple Sclerosis (MS). In the current study, we aimed to assess CSF ASYN levels in MS spectrum (Clinically Isolated Syndrome (CIS) and MS) patients and compare them to those obtained in control subjects with benign neurological conditions (BNC). We used a recently developed, ultra-sensitive sandwich Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay to measure and compare CSF ASYN levels in 3 categories of subjects: BNC (n=38), CIS (n=36) and MS [Relapsing Remitting (RRMS, n=22) and Primary Progressive (PPMS, n=15)]. We also performed secondary analyses, including relationship of CSF ASYN levels to aging, gender, presence of CSF oligoclonal bands (OB) and gadolinium (Gd)-enhancing demyelinating lesions on T1-weighted MRIs. CSF ASYN levels were found to be significantly lower in the CIS (78.2 ± 7.5 pg/ml), RRMS (76.8 ± 5.1 pg/ml) and PPMS (76.3 ± 6.7 pg/ml) groups compared to the BNC (125.7 ± 13.6 pg/ml) group. Secondary analyses did not reveal additional correlations. Our results suggest that in a cohort of CIS and MS patients, CSF ASYN levels are decreased, thus providing another possible link between MS and neurodegeneration

Alpha-synuclein is a protein that is abundant in the human brain. In the brain, alpha-synuclein is found mainly at the tips of nerve cells (neurons) in specialized structures called presynaptic terminals Recently, it has been shown that alpha-synuclein is localized in neuronal mitochondria. Presynaptic terminals release chemical messengers, called neurotransmitters, from compartments known as synaptic vesicles. The release of neurotransmitters relays signals between neurons and is critical for normal brain function. In this study they see a drop in alpha synuclein. What biomarker function is being detected

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  • So does the level of this stuff decrease in the likes of MND or Parkinson's disease?

    The way this is presented here makes it look very promising. Is there a catch?

    • Infact alpha-synuclein and synucleinopathies were first identified in PD but now covers every neurodegenerative disorder known to man! The drop in the CSF is interpreted as alpha synuclein deposition in the brain. This is similar to A-beta.

      What's the catch…individually these biomarkers are of little value but maybe combining them with others, say for instance neurofilaments may increase their predictive value.

  • If ASYN levels are low in PsMS and ASYN is linked to neuronal mitochondria, does this not point to therapeutic strategies that seek to boost mitochondria's activities – ones that cross the BBB such as, for instance, Idebenone…

    • seek to boost mitochondria function……yes
      Idebenone is synthetic analog of coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) so more evidence is needed.

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