Objective: We aimed to investigate the association of the serum urate level with cortical thickness and white matter integrity in multiple system atrophy (MSA). Methods: We recruited 75 MSA patients and 42 controls who underwent brain MRI and measured serum urate level at baseline. Using cortical thickness and tract-based spatial statistics analyses, we investigated the correlation between serum urate levels and cortical thickness or diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) measures in controls and MSA patients. Interaction effects were analyzed to find different patterns of correlation according to sex and clinical subtype. We evaluated the relationship between serum urate levels, DTI measures, and total UMSARS score, using path analysis. Results: Serum urate levels showed a positive correlation with FA values in the corpus callosum and a negative correlation with MD values in widespread regions including cerebellar, brainstem, and cerebral white matter in patients with MSA. Both sexes showed a negative correlation between serum urate levels and MD values without significant interaction effect. In subgroup analysis according to subtype, patients with cerebellar subtype showed a negative correlation. Serum urate levels did not correlated with cortical thickness. Path analysis showed that MD values in middle and inferior cerebellar peduncle mediated the association between serum urate level and total UMSAR score. Interpretation: The present study demonstrated that serum urate levels played a pivotal role in white matter disintegrity and clinical disability in MSA. It would provide an evidence of the role of urate as a potential neuroprotective factor against white matter neurodegeneration in MSA.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Clinical Neurology