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November 1988

α-Melanocyte-Stimulating Hormonelike Immunoreactivity Is Increased in Cerebrospinal Fluid of Patients With Parkinson's Disease

Author Affiliations

From the Laboratory of Neurosciences, National Institute on Aging, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Md (Drs Rainero, Kaye, May, Pinessi, Friedland, and Rapoport); and the Department of Neurology, Boston University School of Medicine and the Neurology Service, Veterans Administration Medical Center, Boston (Drs Durso, Katz, Albert, and Wolfe). Dr Kaye is currently with the Department of Neurology, University of Oregon Health Sciences, Portland.

Arch Neurol. 1988;45(11):1224-1227. doi:10.1001/archneur.1988.00520350062017

• We measured α-melanocyte—stimulating hormonelike immunoreactivity in cerebrospinal fluid of 12 healthy control subjects and nine patients with Parkinson's disease, four of whom had never been treated. Mean cerebrospinal fluid α-melanocyte—stimulating hormonelike immunoreactivity concentration was twofold greater in parkinsonian patients (44.1 ± 9.3 [SD] pg/mL) as compared with control subjects (21.8 ± 10.0 pg/ mL). No significant correlation was found between cerebrospinal fluid α-melanocyte—stimulating hormonelike imminoreactivity concentrations and patient age, disease severity, or duration of disease. These results suggest a functional relation between dopaminergic and melanotropinergic systems in the human brain.

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