Introduction: The present study aimed to investigate whether the level of presynaptic dopamine neuronal loss predicts future development of wearing-off in de novo Parkinson's disease. Methods: This retrospective cohort study included a total of 342 non-demented patients with de novo Parkinson's disease who underwent dopamine transporter positron emission tomography scans at their initial evaluation and received dopaminergic medications for 24 months or longer. Onset of wearing-off was determined based on patients’ medical records at their outpatient clinic visits every 3–6 months. Predictive power of dopamine transporter activity in striatal subregions and other clinical factors for the development of wearing-off was evaluated by Cox proportional hazard models. Results: During a median follow-up period of 50.2 ± 18.9 months, 69 patients (20.2%) developed wearing-off. Patients with wearing-off exhibited less dopamine transporter activity in the putamen, particularly the anterior and posterior putamens, compared to those without wearing-off. Multivariate Cox proportional hazard models revealed that dopamine transporter activities of the anterior (hazard ratio 0.556; p = 0.008) and whole putamens (hazard ratio 0.504; p = 0.025) were significant predictors of development of wearing-off. In addition, younger age at onset of Parkinson's disease, lower body weight, and a motor phenotype of postural instability/gait disturbance were also significant predictors for development of wearing-off. Conclusion: The present results provide in vivo evidence to support the hypothesis that presynaptic dopamine neuronal loss, particularly in the anterior putamen, leads to development of wearing-off in Parkinson's disease.
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All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Geriatrics and Gerontology
- Clinical Neurology