Deep brain stimulation (DBS) for Parkinson’s disease provides beneficial effects on motor function for at least three years, according to a study in the online June 20 Neurology. Patients in the multicenter, randomized trial were assigned to receive DBS of either the globus pallidus interna (89 patients) or the subthalmic nucleus (70 patients). Both groups were assessed at baseline and at 3, 6, 18, 24, and 36 months, and motor function in both groups improved between baseline and 36 months and was stable over time. However, gradual declines in neurocognitive function were observed. According to the investigators, these declines “likely reflect underlying disease progression and highlight the importance of nonmotor symptoms in determining quality of life.”
Patients with multiple sclerosis (MS), especially those taking antidepressants or hypnotics/anxiolytics, may have an increased risk of hip fracture, researchers reported in the June 12 Neurology. In a population-based cohort study, 2,415 patients with MS were matched by birth, sex, and practice to up to six control patients without MS. The investigators used Cox proportional hazards models to estimate the hazard ratio of fracture in patients with MS, finding that 59 fractures (2.4%) occurred among patients with MS, while 227 fractures (1.8%) occurred among controls. Patients with MS also had a fourfold increased risk of hip fracture, and patients with MS who had been prescribed antidepressants or hypnotics/anxiolytics in the previous six months had a significantly higher risk of osteopathic fracture. “Increased awareness of the risk of hip fracture is warranted in patients with MS,” the study authors concluded.
Women with Alzheimer’s disease are more likely to have the apolipoprotein E (APOE) e4 allele, and the interaction between APOE genotype and gender is evident in the preclinical period, researchers reported in the June 13 issue of the Journal of Neuroscience. Using fcMRI, the investigators analyzed the default mode network in the brains of 131 healthy participants with a median age of 70. Carriers of the e4 allele showed reduced default mode connectivity compared with carriers of e3 homozygotes, and additional testing indicated that female carriers of e4 showed significantly decreased connectivity in the default mode, compared with either female e3 homozygotes or male e4 carriers. However, male carriers of e4 did not show substantial difference from male e3 homozygotes. The researchers confirmed the finding through an additional analysis of a cohort of cognitively healthy participants.