Peripheral inflammatory cytokines and motor symptoms in persons with Parkinson's disease

Thumbnail Image
Russell, Daniel W.
Stegemoller, Elizabeth
Major Professor
Committee Member
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
Elsevier Inc.
Russell, Daniel
Research Projects
Organizational Units
Journal Issue
Is Version Of
Human Development and Family Studies
Background Many of the motor symptoms of Parkinson's disease (PD) impact quality of life and are not fully ameliorated by current pharmacological and surgical treatments. A better understanding of the pathophysiology underlying these symptoms is needed. Previous research has suggested that inflammation may play a significant role in PD pathophysiology and progression, but there is limited research exploring how inflammation directly relates to motor symptoms in PD. Thus, the purpose of this study was to evaluate associations between peripheral immune inflammatory markers and motor symptoms of PD, specifically, tremor, bradykinesia, and postural and gait instability. We hypothesized that peripheral inflammatory cytokines would predict the severity of motor symptoms in persons with PD, and that there will be higher levels of peripheral inflammatory cytokine markers in persons with PD when compared to age-matched healthy older adults. Methods Twenty-six participants with PD and fourteen healthy older adults completed the study. For participants with PD, the motor section of the Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale (UPDRS) was recorded and scored by two Movement Disorders Neurologists masked to the study. A blood sample was collected from both participants with PD and the healthy older adults. Through the MILLIPLEX® map High Sensitivity Human Cytokine Kit, key inflammation-related markers were analyzed (TNF-α, IFN-γ, IL-1β, IL-8, IL-2, IL-7, IL-5, IL-13, IL, 4, IL-10 IL-12p70, GM-CSF, and IL-6). Results Results revealed significantly higher levels of IL-6 in persons with PD when compared to healthy older adults (p ​= ​0.005). Moreover, results revealed that higher levels of IL-4 (p ​= ​0.011) and lower levels of IFNγ (p ​= ​0.003) significantly predicted more severe tremor in persons with PD. No other associations between the peripheral inflammation markers and other motor symptoms were observed. Conclusions Overall, these results are consistent with a growing body of literature that implicates inflammatory cytokines in the PD, and further suggests that inflammatory cytokines, or lack thereof, may be associated with tremor in persons with PD. Keywords: Parkinson's diseasePeripheral inflammationInflammatory cytokinesMotor impairmentsMovement Disorders Society Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale
This article is published as Diaz, K., Kohut, M.L., Russell, D.W., Stegemoller, E.L., Peripheral inflammatory cytokines and motor symptoms in persons with Parkinson's disease. Brain, Behavior, Immunity Healthy, May 2022, 21(100442); Posted with permission.