CSF α-synuclein levels in dementia with Lewy bodies and Alzheimer's disease

Moeko Noguchi-Shinohara, Takahiko Tokuda, Mitsuhiro Yoshita, Takashi Kasai, Kenjiro Ono, Masanori Nakagawa, Omar M.A. El-Agnaf, Masahito Yamada

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

90 Citations (Scopus)


Dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB) is characterized by widespread depositions of α-synuclein, which are described as Lewy bodies. Recently, it was shown that neuronal cells in culture constitutively release α-synuclein into the culture medium and that α-synuclein is normally present in human cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). The aim of the present study was to evaluate the diagnostic value of CSF α-synuclein levels in discriminating DLB from Alzheimer's disease (AD). α-Synuclein was measured in CSF from 16 patients with DLB and 21 patients with AD. Iodine-123 metaiodobenzylguanidine cardiac scintigraphy was also performed to assess Lewy body pathology. CSF α-synuclein levels did not differ significantly between DLB and AD patients. However, the duration of illness was associated with lower α-synuclein levels (p < 0.05) in DLB, while no such association was found in AD. The present data show CSF α-synuclein levels are not sensitive diagnostic markers to discriminate DLB from AD. However, the lower α-synuclein levels in DLB patients with longer duration suggest a reduction in CSF α-synuclein in association with increased severity of α-synucleinopathy in the brain.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-6
Number of pages6
JournalBrain Research
Publication statusPublished - Jan 28 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • Alpha-synuclein
  • Dementia with Lewy bodies
  • Parkinson's disease
  • Parkinsonism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Neuroscience
  • Molecular Biology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Developmental Biology


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