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1.  German Translation and Validation of the “Freezing of Gait Questionnaire” in Patients with Parkinson's Disease 
Parkinson's Disease  2015;2015:982058.
Background. Freezing of Gait (FOG) is a disabling parkinsonian symptom. The Freezing of Gait Questionnaire (FOG-Q) reliably detects FOG in patients with Parkinson's disease (PD). Objectives. The aim of this study was to develop a German translated version of the FOG-Q and to assess its validity. Methods. The translation was accomplished using forward-backward-translation. The construct validity of the FOG-Q was examined in twenty-seven German native speaking PD patients. Convergent validity was assessed by correlating the FOG-Q with the Movement Disorder Society-Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale (MDS-UPDRS) II-III, the Parkinson Disease Questionnaire 39 (PDQ-39), and the Timed Up and Go Test (TUG). Divergent validity was assessed by correlating the FOG-Q with the MDS-UPDRS I. The internal consistency was measured using Cronbach's alpha (Cα). Results. A good internal structure of the FOG-Q was found (Cα = 0.83). Significant moderate correlations between the FOG-Q and the MDS-UPDRS item 2.13 (freezing) (rs = 0.568, P = 0.002) and between the FOG-Q and the PDQ-39 subscale mobility (rs = 0.516, P = 0.006) were found. The lack of correlation with the MDS-UPDRS I demonstrated good divergent validity. Conclusion. The German FOG-Q is a valid tool to assess FOG in German native speaking PD patients.
doi:10.1155/2015/982058
PMCID: PMC4325214
2.  Personality Changes after Deep Brain Stimulation in Parkinson's Disease 
Parkinson's Disease  2015;2015:490507.
Objectives. Deep brain stimulation of the subthalamic nucleus (STN-DBS) is a recognized therapy that improves motor symptoms in advanced Parkinson's disease (PD). However, little is known about its impact on personality. To address this topic, we have assessed personality traits before and after STN-DBS in PD patients. Methods. Forty patients with advanced PD were assessed with the Temperament and Character Inventory (TCI): the Urgency, Premeditation, Perseverance, Sensation Seeking impulsive behaviour scale (UPPS), and the Neuroticism and Lie subscales of the Eysenck Personality Questionnaire (EPQ-N, EPQ-L) before surgery and after three months of STN-DBS. Collateral information obtained from the UPPS was also reported. Results. Despite improvement in motor function and reduction in dopaminergic dosage patients reported lower score on the TCI Persistence and Self-Transcendence scales, after three months of STN-DBS, compared to baseline (P = 0.006; P = 0.024). Relatives reported significantly increased scores on the UPPS Lack of Premeditation scale at follow-up (P = 0.027). Conclusion. STN-DBS in PD patients is associated with personality changes in the direction of increased impulsivity.
doi:10.1155/2015/490507
PMCID: PMC4325225
3.  Targeting Histone Deacetylases: A Novel Approach in Parkinson's Disease 
Parkinson's Disease  2015;2015:303294.
The worldwide prevalence of movement disorders is increasing day by day. Parkinson's disease (PD) is the most common movement disorder. In general, the clinical manifestations of PD result from dysfunction of the basal ganglia. Although the exact underlying mechanisms leading to neural cell death in this disease remains unknown, the genetic causes are often established. Indeed, it is becoming increasingly evident that chromatin acetylation status can be impaired during the neurological disease conditions. The acetylation and deacetylation of histone proteins are carried out by opposing actions of histone acetyltransferases (HATs) and histone deacetylases (HDACs), respectively. In the recent past, studies with HDAC inhibitors result in beneficial effects in both in vivo and in vitro models of PD. Various clinical trials have also been initiated to investigate the possible therapeutic potential of HDAC inhibitors in patients suffering from PD. The possible mechanisms assigned for these neuroprotective actions of HDAC inhibitors involve transcriptional activation of neuronal survival genes and maintenance of histone acetylation homeostasis, both of which have been shown to be dysregulated in PD. In this review, the authors have discussed the putative role of HDAC inhibitors in PD and associated abnormalities and suggest new directions for future research in PD.
doi:10.1155/2015/303294
PMCID: PMC4324954
4.  Levetiracetam Ameliorates L-DOPA-Induced Dyskinesia in Hemiparkinsonian Rats Inducing Critical Molecular Changes in the Striatum 
Parkinson's Disease  2015;2015:253878.
L-DOPA-induced dyskinesias (LID) remain a major problem of long-term therapy of Parkinson's disease. Levetiracetam, a new antiepileptic drug, has been shown to reduce LID, but the mechanisms underlying its effects are unknown. In this study, we assessed the effect of levetiracetam on key mediators of LID in rats with 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA) lesions. Following chronic administration of L-DOPA (12 mg/kg, twice daily for 14 days), rats developed abnormal involuntary movements (AIMs), but co-administration of levetiracetam (15, 30, and 60 mg/kg) with equivalent L-DOPA dosing significantly reduced AIMs scores in a dose dependent manner. The effects of levetiracetam were associated with changes in striatal expression of ΔFosB, phosphorylated extracellular signal-regulated kinases 1 and 2 (p-ERK1/2), and phosphorylated cAMP-regulated phosphoprotein of 32 kDa (p-DARPP-32). These data support that levetiracetam acts at multiple sites in the pathogenetic cascade of LID, and that further understanding of these actions of antiepileptics may contribute to developing new LID therapies.
doi:10.1155/2015/253878
PMCID: PMC4322303
5.  Identification of Changing Lower Limb Neuromuscular Activation in Parkinson's Disease during Treadmill Gait with and without Levodopa Using a Nonlinear Analysis Index 
Parkinson's Disease  2015;2015:497825.
Analysis of electromyographic (EMG) data is a cornerstone of research related to motor control in Parkinson's disease. Nonlinear EMG analysis tools have shown to be valuable, but analysis is often complex and interpretation of the data may be difficult. A previously introduced algorithm (SYNERGOS) that provides a single index value based on simultaneous multiple muscle activations (MMA) has been shown to be effective in detecting changes in EMG activation due to modifications of walking speeds in healthy adults. In this study, we investigated if SYNERGOS detects MMA changes associated with both different walking speeds and levodopa intake. Nine male Parkinsonian patients walked on a treadmill with increasing speed while on or off medication. We collected EMG data and computed SYNERGOS indices and employed a restricted maximum likelihood linear mixed model to the values. SYNERGOS was sensitive to neuromuscular modifications due to both alterations of gait speed and intake of levodopa. We believe that the current experiment provides evidence for the potential value of SYNERGOS as a nonlinear tool in clinical settings, by providing a single value index of MMA. This could help clinicians to evaluate the efficacy of interventions and treatments in Parkinson's disease in a simple manner.
doi:10.1155/2015/497825
PMCID: PMC4320881
6.  Disorders of the Oral Cavity in Parkinson's Disease and Parkinsonian Syndromes 
Parkinson's Disease  2015;2015:379482.
Awareness of nonmotor symptoms of Parkinson's disease is growing during the last decade. Among these, oral cavity disorders are, although prevalent, often neglected by the patients, their caregivers, and physicians. Some of these disorders include increased prevalence of caries and periodontal disease, sialorrhea and drooling, xerostomia, orofacial pain, bruxism, and taste impairment. Though many of these disorders are not fully understood yet and relatively few controlled trials have been published regarding their treatment, physicians should be aware of the body of evidence that does exist on these topics. This paper reviews current knowledge regarding the epidemiology, pathophysiology, and treatment options of disorders of the oral cavity in Parkinson's disease patients.
doi:10.1155/2015/379482
PMCID: PMC4312641
7.  MRI Correlates of Parkinson's Disease Progression: A Voxel Based Morphometry Study 
Parkinson's Disease  2015;2015:378032.
We investigated structural brain differences between a group of early-mild PD patients at different phases of the disease and healthy subjects using voxel-based morphometry (VBM). 20 mild PD patients compared to 15 healthy at baseline and after 2 years of follow-up. VBM is a fully automated technique, which allows the identification of regional differences in the gray matter enabling an objective analysis of the whole brain between groups of subjects. With respect to controls, PD patients exhibited decreased GM volumes in right putamen and right parietal cortex. After 2 years of disease, the same patients confirmed GM loss in the putamen and parietal cortex; a significant difference was also observed in the area of pedunculopontine nucleus (PPN) and in the mesencephalic locomotor region (MLR). PD is associated with brain morphological changes in cortical and subcortical structures. The first regions to be affected in PD seem to be the parietal cortex and the putamen. A third structure that undergoes atrophy is the part of the inferior-posterior midbrain, attributable to the PPN and MLR. Our findings provide new insight into the brain involvement in PD and could contribute to a better understanding of the sequence of events occurring in these patients.
doi:10.1155/2015/378032
PMCID: PMC4299788  PMID: 25628916
8.  Altered Brain Activation in Early Drug-Naive Parkinson's Disease during Heat Pain Stimuli: An fMRI Study 
Parkinson's Disease  2015;2015:273019.
Parkinson's disease (PD) is a progressive neurodegenerative disease characterized by motor and nonmotor signs and symptoms. To date, many studies of PD have focused on its cardinal motor symptoms. To study the nonmotor signs of early PD, we investigated the reactions solicited by heat pain stimuli in early untreated PD patients without pain using fMRI. The activation patterns of contact heat stimuli (51°C) were assessed in 14 patients and 17 age- and sex-matched healthy controls. Patients with PD showed significant decreases in activation of the superior temporal gyrus (STG) and insula compared with controls. In addition, a significant relationship between activation of the insula and STG and the pain scores was observed in healthy controls but not in PD. This study provided further support that the insula and STG are important parts of the somatosensory circuitry recruited during the period of pain. The hypoactivity of the STG and insula in PD implied that functions including affective, cognitive, and sensory-discriminative processes, which are associated with the insula and STG, were disturbed. This finding supports the view that leaving early PD untreated could be tied directly to central nervous system dysfunction.
doi:10.1155/2015/273019
PMCID: PMC4299805  PMID: 25628915
9.  Measuring Hemoglobin Levels in the Optic Disc of Parkinson's Disease Patients Using New Colorimetric Analysis Software 
Parkinson's Disease  2014;2014:946540.
Objective. To evaluate a new method of measuring hemoglobin (Hb) levels and quantifying the color changes in the optic nerve head of Parkinson's disease (PD) patients. We also compared differences in retinal nerve fiber layer (RNFL) thicknesses obtained using spectral domain optical coherence tomography (OCT) device between PD group and healthy group. Methods. One hundred and fifty-five PD patients and 91 sex- and age-matched healthy subjects were included in this cross-sectional study. OCT examinations and one photograph of the optic disc were performed. The Laguna ONhE (“optic nerve hemoglobin”; Insoft SL, Tenerife, Spain) software was used to analyze the Hb level on the acquired optic disc photographs. Results. PD patients exhibited significantly reduced mean optic disc Hb percentages (57.56% in PD, 67.63% in healthy subjects; P = 0.001) as well as reduced Hb in almost all analyzed sectors, with the largest differences detected in the inferior and nasal sectors. RNFL parameters were significantly reduced in PD patients compared with healthy subjects, especially in the inferior quadrant. Conclusions. Measurements of optic disc Hb levels obtained with the Laguna ONhE software had good ability to detect optic nerve color changes (more papillary paleness and consequently this could suggest optic atrophy and axonal loss) in PD patients.
doi:10.1155/2014/946540
PMCID: PMC4284935  PMID: 25587487
10.  Effect of Centella asiatica Leaf Extract on the Dietary Supplementation in Transgenic Drosophila Model of Parkinson's Disease 
Parkinson's Disease  2014;2014:262058.
The role of Centella asiatica L. leaf extract was studied on the transgenic Drosophila model flies expressing normal human alpha synuclein (h-αS) in the neurons. The leaf extract was prepared in acetone and was subjected to GC-MS analysis. C. asiatica extract at final concentration of 0.25, 0.50, and 1.0 μL/mL was mixed with the diet and the flies were allowed feeding on it for 24 days. The effect of extract was studied on the climbing ability, activity pattern, lipid peroxidation, protein carbonyl content, glutathione content, and glutathione-S-transferase activity in the brains of transgenic Drosophila. The exposure of extract to PD model flies results in a significant delay in the loss of climbing ability and activity pattern and reduced the oxidative stress (P < 0.05) in the brains of PD flies as compared to untreated PD flies. The results suggest that C. asiatica leaf extract is potent in reducing the PD symptoms in transgenic Drosophila model of Parkinson's disease.
doi:10.1155/2014/262058
PMCID: PMC4265550  PMID: 25538856
11.  Recurrent Falls in People with Parkinson's Disease without Cognitive Impairment: Focusing on Modifiable Risk Factors 
Parkinson's Disease  2014;2014:432924.
Falls can be considered a disabling feature in Parkinson's disease. We aimed to identify risk factors for falling, testing simultaneously the ability of disease-specific and balance-related measures. We evaluated 171 patients, collecting demographic and clinical data, including standardized assessments with the Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale (UPDRS), activities of daily living (ADL) and motor sections, modified Hoehn and Yahr Scale, Schwab and England, eight-item Parkinson's Disease Questionnaire, Activities-specific Balance Confidence Scale, Falls Efficacy Scale-International (FES-I), Berg Balance Scale, Dynamic Gait Index, Functional Reach, and Timed Up and Go. ROC curves were constructed to determine the cutoff scores for all measures. Variables with P < 0.1 entered a logistic regression model. The prevalence of recurrent falls was 30% (95% CI 24%–38%). In multivariate analysis, independent risk factors for recurrent falls were (P < 0.05) levodopa equivalent dose (OR = 1.283 per 100 mg increase; 95% CI = 1.092–1.507), UPDRS-ADL > 16 points (OR = 10.0; 95% CI = 3.6–28.3), FES-I > 30 points (OR = 6.0; 95% CI = 1.6–22.6), and Berg ≤ 48 points (OR = 3.9; 95% CI = 1.2–12.7).We encourage the utilization of these modifiable risk factors in the screening of fall risk.
doi:10.1155/2014/432924
PMCID: PMC4259076  PMID: 25506466
12.  Parkinson's Disease: Low-Dose Haloperidol Increases Dopamine Receptor Sensitivity and Clinical Response 
Parkinson's Disease  2014;2014:684973.
Background. It is known that ultra-low doses of haloperidol can cause dopamine supersensitivity of dopamine D2 receptors and related behaviour in animals. Objective. The objective was to determine whether a daily ultra-low dose of 40 micrograms of haloperidol could enhance the clinical action of levodopa in Parkinson's disease patients. Method. While continuing their daily treatment with levodopa, 16 patients with Parkinson's disease were followed weekly for six weeks. They received an add-on daily dose of 40 micrograms of haloperidol for the first two weeks only. The SPES/SCOPA scale (short scale for assessment of motor impairments and disabilities in Parkinson's disease) was administered before treatment and weekly throughout the trial. Results. The results showed a mean decrease in SPES/SCOPA scores after one week of the add-on treatment. Conclusion. SCOPA scores decreased after the addition of low-dose haloperidol to the standard daily levodopa dose. This finding is consistent with an increase in sensitivity of dopamine D2 receptors induced by haloperidol. Such treatment for Parkinson's disease may possibly permit the levodopa dose to be reduced and, thus, delay the onset of levodopa side effects.
doi:10.1155/2014/684973
PMCID: PMC4258318  PMID: 25506040
13.  Is the MDS-UPDRS a Good Screening Tool for Detecting Sleep Problems and Daytime Sleepiness in Parkinson's Disease? 
Parkinson's Disease  2014;2014:806169.
Movement Disorder Society-sponsored Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale (MDS-UPDRS) has separate items for measuring sleep problems (item 1.7) and daytime sleepiness (1.8). The aim of our study was to evaluate the screening sensitivity and specificity of these items to the PD Sleep Scale 2nd version (PDSS-2) and Epworth Sleepiness Scale (ESS). In this nationwide, cross-sectional study 460 PD patients were enrolled. Spearman's rank correlation coefficients were calculated between the individual items, domains, and the total score of PDSS-2 and item 1.7 of MDS-UPDRS. Similarly, the items and the total score of ESS were contrasted to item 1.8 of MDS-UPDRS. After developing generalized ordinal logistic regression models, the transformed and observed scores were compared by Lin's Concordance Correlation Coefficient. Only item 3 difficulties staying asleep and the “disturbed sleep” domain of PDSS-2 showed high correlation with “sleep problems” item 1.7 of the MDS-UPDRS. Total score of PDSS-2 had moderate correlation with this MDS-UPRDS item. The total score of ESS showed the strongest, but still moderate, correlation with “daytime sleepiness” item 1.8 of MDS-UPDRS. As intended, the MDS-UPDRS serves as an effective screening tool for both sleep problems and daytime sleepiness and identifies subjects whose disabilities need further investigation.
doi:10.1155/2014/806169
PMCID: PMC4251816  PMID: 25506041
14.  Oleanolic Acid Enhances the Beneficial Effects of Preconditioning on PC12 Cells 
Parkinson's Disease  2014;2014:929854.
Preconditioning triggers endogenous protection against subsequent exposure to higher concentrations of a neurotoxin. In this study, we investigated whether exposure to oleanolic acid (OA) enhances the protective effects of preconditioning on PC12 cells exposed to 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA). A concentration response curve was constructed using 6-OHDA (50, 150, 300, and 600 μM). The experiment consisted of 6 groups: untreated, OA only, Group 1: cells treated with 6-OHDA (50 μM) for 1 hour, Group 2: cells treated with 6-OHDA (150 μM) for 1 hour, Group 3: cells treated with 6-OHDA (50 μM) for 30 minutes followed 6 hours later by treatment with 6-OHDA (150 μM) for 30 minutes, and Group 4: cells treated as in group 3 but also received OA immediately after the second 6-OHDA treatment. Cell viability and apoptotic ratio were assessed using the MTT and Annexin V staining tests, respectively. In preconditioned cells, we found that cell viability remained high following exposure to 6-OHDA (150 μM). OA treatment enhanced the protective effects of preconditioning. Similarly, with the annexin V apoptosis test, preconditioning protected the cell and this was enhanced by OA. Therefore, preexposure of PC12 cells to low 6-OHDA concentration can protect against subsequent toxic insults of 6-OHDA and OA enhances this protection.
doi:10.1155/2014/929854
PMCID: PMC4248335  PMID: 25478286
15.  Validation of the Persian Translation of the Swallowing Disturbance Questionnaire in Parkinson's Disease Patients 
Parkinson's Disease  2014;2014:159476.
Dysphagia, as a common finding in Parkinson's disease (PD) patients, was estimated to be present in 80–95% of this population during different stages of the disease. The Swallowing Disturbance Questionnaire (SDQ) was created as a self-rated dysphagia screening tool in PD. According to the guidelines for cross-cultural adaptation, Persian version of this questionnaire (SDQ-P) was developed. 59 Persian patients (39 men and 20 women) participated in the study. They responded to the SDQ-P and underwent videofluoroscopic swallowing study (VFSS). Aspiration during VFSS was compared with questionnaire results for each individual. Cronbach's alpha coefficient for the questionnaire was 0.86 and based on SDQ-P 15 patients (25.4%) were dysphagic, while 10 patients (16.9%) showed aspiration during VFSS. SDQ-P sensitivity and specificity in predicting aspiration were 96.7 and 91.2%; therefore, the SDQ-P could be a prognostic tool for aspiration. The positive predictive value (PPV), the negative predictive value (NPV), and the pre- and posttest probabilities of aspiration were 0.67, 1, 16.9%, and 66.7%, respectively. In summary, this study demonstrated the reliability and also the feasibility of SDQ-P for screening of aspiration in Iranian patients with PD. Further evaluation of SDQ-P in larger subject population would be suggested.
doi:10.1155/2014/159476
PMCID: PMC4227361  PMID: 25405058
16.  Independent Validation of the SEND-PD and Correlation with the MDS-UPDRS Part IA 
Parkinson's Disease  2014;2014:260485.
Introduction. Neuropsychiatric symptoms in Parkinson's disease can be assessed by the MDS-UPDRS part IA. The Scale for Evaluation of Neuropsychiatric Disorders in Parkinson's disease (SEND-PD) has been recently developed to assess the severity of some neuropsychiatric symptoms. The objective of this study is to compare the performance of the SEND-PD with the corresponding items of the MDS-UPDRS part IA. Methods. Patients with Parkinson's disease were evaluated using the MDS-UPDRS and the SEND-PD by independent raters. Partial SEND-PD and neuropsychiatric MDS-UPDRS part IA were constructed with equivalent items for comparison. Results. A total of 260 consecutive patients were included. Overall, 61.2% of the patients did not report any psychotic symptom and 83.5% did not report any ICD symptom. On the other hand, 78.5% of the patients did report at least one symptom related to apathy, depression, or anxiety. The partial SEND-PD score was 2.9 ± 3.1 (range from 0 to 16). The neuropsychiatric MDS-UPDRS part IA score was 2.9 ± 3 (range from 0 to 14). The correlation coefficient between corresponding items ranged from 0.67 to 0.98 and between both summary indexes was rs = 0.93 (all, P < 0.001). Conclusion. A high association between equivalent items of the SEND-PD and the MDS-UPDRS was found.
doi:10.1155/2014/260485
PMCID: PMC4226183  PMID: 25400976
17.  Changes in Vowel Articulation with Subthalamic Nucleus Deep Brain Stimulation in Dysarthric Speakers with Parkinson's Disease 
Parkinson's Disease  2014;2014:487035.
Purpose. To investigate changes in vowel articulation with the electrical deep brain stimulation (DBS) of the subthalamic nucleus (STN) in dysarthric speakers with Parkinson's disease (PD). Methods. Eight Quebec-French speakers diagnosed with idiopathic PD who had undergone STN DBS were evaluated ON-stimulation and OFF-stimulation (1 hour after DBS was turned off). Vowel articulation was compared ON-simulation versus OFF-stimulation using acoustic vowel space and formant centralization ratio, calculated with the first (F1) and second formant (F2) of the vowels /i/, /u/, and /a/. The impact of the preceding consonant context on articulation, which represents a measure of coarticulation, was also analyzed as a function of the stimulation state. Results. Maximum vowel articulation increased during ON-stimulation. Analyses also indicate that vowel articulation was modulated by the consonant context but this relationship did not change with STN DBS. Conclusions. Results suggest that STN DBS may improve articulation in dysarthric speakers with PD, in terms of range of movement. Optimization of the electrical parameters for each patient is important and may lead to improvement in speech fine motor control. However, the impact on overall speech intelligibility may still be small. Clinical considerations are discussed and new research avenues are suggested.
doi:10.1155/2014/487035
PMCID: PMC4221888  PMID: 25400977
18.  Cognitive Status Correlates with CXCL10/IP-10 Levels in Parkinson's Disease 
Parkinson's Disease  2014;2014:903796.
Cognitive impairment and depressive symptoms are of great interest in Parkinson's disease (PD), since they are very common and lead to increased disability with poor quality of life. Inflammatory mechanisms have been implicated in PD and its nonmotor symptoms. In the current pilot study, we aimed to evaluate plasma levels of chemokines in PD patients and to analyze the putative association of chemokines with depressive symptoms and cognitive performance. We hypothesized that higher chemokines levels are associated with worse cognitive performance and increased depressive symptoms in PD. For this purpose, 40 PD patients and 25 age- and gender-matched controls were subjected to a clinical evaluation including cognitive and mood tests. Peripheral blood was drawn and plasma levels of CCL2/MCP-1, CCL11/eotaxin, CCL24/eotaxin-2, and CXCL10/IP-10 were measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. PD patients and control individuals presented comparable plasma concentrations of all the evaluated chemokines. In PD patients, CXCL10/IP-10 plasma levels correlated positively with Hoehn and Yahr staging scale. In addition, the higher CXCL10/IP-10 levels, the worse performance on cognitive tests. Although there was no significant difference between PD patients and control individuals regarding chemokines levels, our preliminary results showed that CXCL10/IP-10 may be associated with cognitive status in PD.
doi:10.1155/2014/903796
PMCID: PMC4216701  PMID: 25386381
19.  Random Whole Body Vibration over 5 Weeks Leads to Effects Similar to Placebo: A Controlled Study in Parkinson's Disease 
Parkinson's Disease  2014;2014:386495.
Background. Random whole body vibration (WBV) training leads to beneficial short-term effects in patients with Parkinson's disease (PD). However, the effect of WBV lasting several weeks is not clear. Objectives. The aim of this study was to assess a random WBV training over 5 weeks in PD. Methods. Twenty-one participants with PD were allocated to either an experimental or a placebo group matched by age, gender, and Hoehn&Yahr stage. The WBV training consisted of 5 series, 60 s each. In the placebo group, vibration was simulated. The primary outcome was the change of performance in Functional reach test (FRT), step-walk-turn task, biomechanical Gait Analysis, Timed up and go test (TUG), and one leg stance. Findings. In most of the parameters, there was no significant interaction of “time∗group.” Both groups improved significantly in Gait parameters, TUG, and one leg stance. Only in the FRT [F(1,15) = 8.397; P < 0.05] and in the TUG [F(1,15) = 4.971; P < 0.05] the experimental group performed significantly better than the placebo group. Conclusions. Random WBV training over 5 weeks seems to be less effective than reported in previous studies performing short-term training. The slight improvements in the FRT and TUG are not clinically relevant.
doi:10.1155/2014/386495
PMCID: PMC4211146  PMID: 25371843
20.  Are Branded and Generic Extended-Release Ropinirole Formulations Equally Efficacious? A Rater-Blinded, Switch-Over, Multicenter Study 
Parkinson's Disease  2014;2014:158353.
The aim of this study was to compare the efficacy of the branded and a generic extended-release ropinirole formulation in the treatment of advanced Parkinson's disease (PD). Of 22 enrolled patients 21 completed the study. A rater blinded to treatment evaluated Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale, Fahn-Tolosa-Marin Tremor Rating Scale, Nonmotor Symptoms Assessment Scale, and a structured questionnaire on ropinirole side effects. Besides, the patients self-administered EQ-5D, Parkinson's Disease Sleep Scale (PDSS-2), and Beck Depression Inventories. Branded and generic ropinirole treatment achieved similar scores on all tests measuring severity of motor symptoms (primary endpoint, UPDRS-III: 27.0 versus 28.0 points, P = 0.505). Based on patient diaries, the lengths of “good time periods” were comparable (10.5 and 10.0 hours for branded and generic ropinirole, resp., P = 0.670). However, generic ropinirole therapy achieved almost 3.0 hours shorter on time without dyskinesia (6.5 versus. 9.5 hours, P < 0.05) and 2.5 hours longer on time with slight dyskinesia (3.5 versus. 1.0 hours, P < 0.05) than the branded ropinirole did. Except for gastrointestinal problems, nonmotor symptoms were similarly controlled. Patients did not prefer either formulation. Although this study has to be interpreted with limitations, it demonstrated that both generic and branded ropinirole administration can achieve similar control on most symptoms of PD.
doi:10.1155/2014/158353
PMCID: PMC4160606  PMID: 25247107
21.  Active Aging for Individuals with Parkinson's Disease: Definitions, Literature Review, and Models 
Parkinson's Disease  2014;2014:739718.
Active aging has been emerged to optimize different aspects of health opportunities during the aging process in order to enhance quality of life. Yet, most of the efforts are on normal aging and less attention has been paid for the elderly suffering from a chronic illness such as Parkinson's disease (PD). The aim of this review was to investigate how the concept of “active aging” fit for the elderly with PD and to propose a new model for them using the recent improvements in caring models and management approaches. For this purpose, biomedical databases have been assessed using relevant keywords to find out appropriate articles. Movement problems of PD affect physical activity, psychiatric symptoms lessen social communication, and cognitive impairment could worsen mental well-being in elderly with PD, all of which could lead to earlier retirement and poorer quality of life compared with healthy elderly. Based on the multisystematic nature of PD, a new “Active Aging Model for Parkinson's Disease” is proposed consisting of self-care, multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary care, palliative care, patient-centered care, and personalized care. These strategies could potentially help the individuals with PD to have a better management approach for their condition towards the concept of active aging.
doi:10.1155/2014/739718
PMCID: PMC4158465  PMID: 25225618
22.  Executive Function and Postural Instability in People with Parkinson's Disease 
Parkinson's Disease  2014;2014:684758.
The specific aspects of cognition contributing to balance and gait have not been clarified in people with Parkinson's disease (PD). Twenty PD participants and twenty age- and gender-matched healthy controls were assessed on cognition and clinical mobility tests. General cognition was assessed with the Mini Mental State Exam and Addenbrooke's Cognitive Exam. Executive function was evaluated using the Trail Making Tests (TMT-A and TMT-B) and a computerized cognitive battery which included a series of choice reaction time (CRT) tests. Clinical gait and balance measures included the Tinetti, Timed Up & Go, Berg Balance, and Functional Reach tests. PD participants performed significantly worse than the controls on the tests of cognitive and executive function, balance, and gait. PD participants took longer on Trail Making Tests, CRT-Location, and CRT-Colour (inhibition response). Furthermore, executive function, particularly longer times on CRT-Distracter and greater errors on the TMT-B, was associated with worse balance and gait performance in the PD group. Measures of general cognition were not associated with balance and gait measures in either group. For PD participants, attention and executive function were impaired. Components of executive function, particularly those involving inhibition response and distracters, were associated with poorer balance and gait performance in PD.
doi:10.1155/2014/684758
PMCID: PMC4127201  PMID: 25136474
23.  Temporal Characteristics of High-Frequency Lower-Limb Oscillation during Freezing of Gait in Parkinson's Disease 
Parkinson's Disease  2014;2014:606427.
A cardinal feature of freezing of gait (FOG) is high frequency (3–8 Hz) oscillation of the legs, and this study aimed to quantify the temporal pattern of lower-body motion prior to and during FOG. Acceleration data was obtained from sensors attached to the back, thighs, shanks, and feet in 14 Parkinson's disease patients performing timed-up-and-go tasks, and clinical assessment of FOG was performed by two experienced raters from video. A total of 23 isolated FOG events, defined as occurring at least 5 s after gait initiation and with no preceding FOG, were identified from the clinical ratings. The corresponding accelerometer records were analyzed within a 4 s window centered at the clinical onset of freezing. FOG-related high-frequency oscillation (an increase in power in the 3–8 Hz band >3 SD from baseline) followed a distal to proximal onset pattern, appearing at the feet, shanks, thighs, and then back over a period of 250 ms. Peak power tended to decrease as the focus of oscillation moved from feet to back. There was a consistent delay (mean 872 ms) between the onset of high frequency oscillation at the feet and clinical onset of FOG. We infer that FOG is characterized by high frequency oscillation at the feet, which progresses proximally and is mechanically damped at the torso.
doi:10.1155/2014/606427
PMCID: PMC4101926  PMID: 25101189
24.  Neuroprotective Properties of a Standardized Extract from Myracrodruon urundeuva Fr. All. (Aroeira-Do-Sertão), as Evaluated by a Parkinson's Disease Model in Rats 
Parkinson's Disease  2014;2014:519615.
Myracrodruon urundeuva Fr. All. (Anacardiaceae) is a Brazilian medicinal species, which is common to the Northeastern Brazilian semiarid region, whose stem-bark is widely used in folk medicine. It is an endangered species, presenting as main bioactive components tannins and chalcones. In this work, we studied the neuroprotective effects of a standardized extract from cultivated M. urundeuva (SEMU), in a model of Parkinson's disease. Thus, a unilateral injection of 6-OHDA was done into the rat right stratum. The animals were submitted to stereotaxic surgery, then treated with SEMU (5, 10, 20, or 40 mg/kg, p.o.) for 2 weeks, subjected to behavioral tests, and euthanized for striata dissections and neurochemical, histological, and immunohistochemical analyses. We showed, for the first time, that SEMU reverted behavioral alterations seen in the 6-OHDA-lesioned group and partially blocked the decrease in DA and DOPAC contents. The numbers of viable neurons and TH immunopositive cells were increased by SEMU. In addition, the SEMU-treated 6-OHDA groups showed lower numbers of GFAP and OX-42 immunopositive cells. The neuroprotective action of SEMU is possibly related to the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties of M. urundeuva, pointing out to its potential use in the prevention or treatment of neurodegenerative conditions, such as Parkinson's disease.
doi:10.1155/2014/519615
PMCID: PMC4099356  PMID: 25061534
25.  Serum Leptin Concentrations in Turkish Parkinson's Disease Population 
Parkinson's Disease  2014;2014:576020.
Objectives. To investigate leptin levels and their relationship to body composition and demographic and clinical characteristics of Turkish patients with Parkinson's disease (PD). Patients and Methods. Forty eligible PD patients and 25 healthy controls were included in the study. Body composition measurements (height, weight, waist circumference (WC), and body mass index (BMI)) of the whole sample and clinical findings of PD patients were evaluated in the on-state. A single 5 mL fasting blood sample was obtained from each participant in the morning. Severity of PD was evaluated using the Hoehn and Yahr scale and the Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale. Results. The mean age of the patients and controls was 60.8 ± 9.4 and 61.8 ± 5.8 years, while the mean BMI was 30.17 ± 5.10 and 28.03 ± 3.23 and the mean leptin levels were 6.8 ± 6.9 and 3.9 ± 3.8 ng/mL, respectively. Only age and gender were correlated with leptin levels. There was a significant difference (P < 0.001) in leptin levels between male (3.6 ± 3.1 ng/mL) and female (14.3 ± 7.7 ng/mL) PD patients. Among the male PD patients, older age and higher BMI and WC values were associated with higher mean leptin levels. There was not any significant relationship between leptin levels and clinical findings in PD patients. Conclusion. These results may suggest that leptin levels have no determinative role in the follow-up of PD patients with regard to the severity and clinical prognosis of PD.
doi:10.1155/2014/576020
PMCID: PMC4020197  PMID: 24868483

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