Publications by authors named "Maria Cristina Rizzetti"

12 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Plasma NfL, clinical subtypes and motor progression in Parkinson's disease.

Parkinsonism Relat Disord 2021 Apr 27;87:41-47. Epub 2021 Apr 27.

Neurology Unit, Department of Clinical and Experimental Sciences, University of Brescia, Brescia, Italy.

Introduction: neurofilament light chain (NfL) levels have been proposed as reliable biomarkers of neurodegeneration in Parkinson's disease (PD) but the relationship between plasma NfL, clinical subtypes of PD and motor progression is still debated.

Methods: plasma NfL concentration was measured in 45 healthy controls and consecutive 92 PD patients who underwent an extensive motor and non-motor assessment at baseline and after 2 years of follow-up. PD malignant phenotype was defined as the combination of at least two out of cognitive impairment, orthostatic hypotension and REM sleep behavior disorder. PD patients were divided according to the age-adjusted cut-offs of plasma NfL levels into high and normal NfL (H-NfL and N-NfL, respectively). A multivariable linear regression model was used to assess the value of plasma NfL as predictor of 2-years progression in PD.

Results: NfL was higher in PD patients than in controls (p = 0.037). H-NfL (n = 16) group exhibited more severe motor and non-motor symptoms, higher prevalence of malignant phenotype and worse motor progression (MDS-UPDRS-III 11.3 vs 0.7 points, p = 0.003) compared to N-NfL group (n = 76). In linear regression analyses plasma NfL emerged as the best predictor of 2-year motor progression compared to age, sex, disease duration, baseline motor/non-motor variables.

Conclusion: increased plasma NfL concentration is associated with malignant PD phenotype and faster motor progression. These findings support the role of NfL assessment as a useful measure for stratifying patients with different baseline slopes of decline in future clinical trials of putative disease-modifying treatments.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.parkreldis.2021.04.016DOI Listing
April 2021

Cerebellar rTMS in PSP: a Double-Blind Sham-Controlled Study Using Mobile Health Technology.

Cerebellum 2021 Feb 5. Epub 2021 Feb 5.

Neurology Unit, Department of Clinical and Experimental Sciences, University of Brescia, P.zale Spedali Civili, 1, 25123, Brescia, Italy.

There are no effective treatments in progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP). The aim of this study was to test the efficacy of theta burst repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) on postural instability in PSP. Twenty PSP patients underwent a session of sham or real cerebellar rTMS in a crossover design. Before and after stimulation, static balance was evaluated with instrumented (lower back accelerometer, Rehagait®, Hasomed, Germany) 30-s trials in semitandem and tandem positions. In tandem and semitandem tasks, active stimulation was associated with increase in time without falls (both p=0.04). In the same tasks, device-extracted parameters revealed significant improvement in area (p=0.007), velocity (p=0.005), acceleration and jerkiness of sway (p=0.008) in real versus sham stimulation. Cerebellar rTMS showed a significant effect on stability in PSP patients, when assessed with mobile digital technology, in a double-blind design. These results should motivate larger and longer trials using non-invasive brain stimulation for PSP patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s12311-021-01239-6DOI Listing
February 2021

Validation of the Italian version of the PSP Quality of Life questionnaire.

Neurol Sci 2019 Dec 26;40(12):2587-2594. Epub 2019 Jul 26.

IRCCS Foundation Ca' Granda Ospedale Maggiore Policlinico, Dino Ferrari Center, Neuroscience Section, Department of Pathophysiology and Transplantation, University of Milan, 20122, Milan, Italy.

Background: Progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP) is a rare rapidly progressive, neurodegenerative disease characterized by falls and ocular movement disturbances. The use of health-related quality of life (HR-QoL) measures allows assessing changes in health status induced by therapeutic interventions or disease progress in neurodegenerative diseases. The PSP-QoL is a 45-item, self-administered questionnaire designed to evaluate HR-QoL in PSP.

Methods And Results: Here, the PSP-QoL was translated into Italian and validated in 190 PSP (96 women and 94 men; mean age ± standard deviation, 72 ± 6.5; mean disease duration, 4.2 ± 2.3) patients diagnosed according to the Movement Disorder Society criteria and recruited in 16 third level movement disorders centers participating in the Neurecanet project. The mean PSP-QoL total score was 77.8 ± 37 (physical subscore, 46.5 ± 18.7; mental subscore, 33.6 ± 19.2). The internal consistency was high (Cronbach's alpha = 0.954); corrected item-total correlation was > 0.40 for the majority of items. The significant and moderate correlation of the PSP-QoL with other HR-QoL measures as well as with motor and disability assessments indicated adequate convergent validity of the scale. Gender and geographic location presented a significant impact on the PSP-QoL in our sample with women and patients from the South of Italy scoring higher than their counterparts.

Conclusion: In conclusion, the Italian version of the PSP-QoL is an easy, reliable and valid tool for assessment of HR-QoL in PSP.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10072-019-04010-2DOI Listing
December 2019

Validation of the Italian version of carers' quality-of-life questionnaire for parkinsonism (PQoL Carer) in progressive supranuclear palsy.

Neurol Sci 2019 Oct 12;40(10):2163-2169. Epub 2019 Jun 12.

IRCCS Foundation Ca' Granda Ospedale Maggiore Policlinico, Dino Ferrari Center, Neuroscience Section, Department of Pathophysiology and Transplantation, University of Milan, 20122, Milan, Italy.

Progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP) is a rare, rapidly progressive, neurodegenerative disease characterized by falls and ocular movement disturbances. Caring for a partner or relative who suffers from PSP entails a strenuous and demanding task, usually lasting for years that affects carers' everyday life routines and emotional and social well-being. The 26-item Parkinsonism Carers QoL (PQoL Carer) is a self-administered, concise instrument evaluating the quality of life of caregivers of patients with atypical parkinsonism (both PSP and multiple system atrophy). Here, the PQoL Carer was translated into Italian and validated in 162 carers of PSP patients (54.3% women; mean age (standard deviation), 62.4 (15.4)) diagnosed according to the Movement Disorder Society criteria and recruited in 16 third-level movement disorders centers participating in the Neurecanet project. The mean PQoL total score was 40.66 ± 19.46. The internal consistency was excellent (Cronbach's alpha = 0.941); corrected item-total correlation was > 0.40 for all the items. A correlation with other health-related quality of life measures as well as with behavioral assessments was shown suggesting adequate convergent validity of the scale. PQoL also correlated with patients' severity of disease. The discriminant validity of the scale was evidenced by its capacity to differentiate between carers with varying levels of self-reported health (p < 0.001). In conclusion, the Italian version of the PQoL Carer is an easy, consistent, and valid tool for the assessment of the quality of life in carers of PSP patients.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10072-019-03944-xDOI Listing
October 2019

Orthostatic hypotension and REM sleep behaviour disorder: impact on clinical outcomes in α-synucleinopathies.

J Neurol Neurosurg Psychiatry 2019 11 29;90(11):1257-1263. Epub 2019 May 29.

Gardner Family Center for Parkinson's Disease and Movement Disorders, Department of Neurology, University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, Ohio, USA

Objective: Review the effect of orthostatic hypotension (OH) and rapid-eye-movement sleep behavioural disorder (RBD) on survival, cognitive impairment and postural stability, and discuss pathogenic mechanisms involved in the association of these two common non-motor features with relevant clinical outcomes in α-synucleinopathies.

Methods: We searched PubMed (January 2007-February 2019) for human studies of OH and RBD evaluating cognitive impairment, postural instability, and survival in Parkinson's disease (PD), dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB), multiple system atrophy (MSA) and pure autonomic failure (PAF). Included studies were analysed for design, key results and limitations as per the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses guidelines.

Results: OH and RBD showed a positive association with cognitive impairment in PD and DLB, conflicting association in PAF, and no association in MSA. OH was correlated with incident falls and postural instability in PD and DLB but not in MSA. The association between RBD and postural instability was inconclusive; positive in five studies, negative in seven. OH, but not RBD, correlated with reduced survival in PD, DLB and MSA. The combination of OH and RBD was associated with cognitive impairment and more rapid progression of postural instability.

Conclusions: OH and RBD yielded individual and combined negative effects on disability in α-synucleinopathies, reflecting a 'malignant' phenotype of PD with early cognitive impairment and postural instability. Underlying mechanisms may include involvement of selected brainstem cholinergic and noradrenergic nuclei.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/jnnp-2019-320846DOI Listing
November 2019

Extrastriatal dopaminergic and serotonergic pathways in Parkinson's disease and in dementia with Lewy bodies: a I-FP-CIT SPECT study.

Eur J Nucl Med Mol Imaging 2019 Jul 16;46(8):1642-1651. Epub 2019 May 16.

Neurology Unit, Department of Clinical and Experimental Sciences, University of Brescia, P.zzale Spedali Civili, 1, 25123, Brescia, Italy.

Purpose: The aim of the study was to evaluate extrastriatal dopaminergic and serotonergic pathways in patients with Parkinson's disease (PD) and dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB) using I-FP-CIT SPECT imaging.

Methods: The study groups comprised 56 PD patients without dementia, 41 DLB patients and 54 controls. Each patient underwent a standardized neurological examination and I-FP-CIT SPECT. Binding in nigrostriatal and extrastriatal regions of interest was calculated in each patient from spatially normalized images. The occipital-adjusted specific to nondisplaceable binding ratio (SBR) in the different regions was compared among the PD patients, DLB patients and controls adjusting for the effects of age, sex, disease duration and serotonergic/dopaminergic treatment. Covariance analysis was used to determine the correlates of local and long-distance regions with extrastriatal I-FP-CIT deficits.

Results: Both PD and DLB patients showed lower I-FP-CIT SPECT SBR in several regions beyond the nigrostriatal system, especially the insula, cingulate and thalamus. DLB patients showed significantly lower I-FP-CIT SBR in the thalamus than controls and PD patients. Thalamic and cingulate I-FP-CIT SBR deficits were correlated, respectively, with limbic serotonergic and widespread cortical monoaminergic projections only in DLB patients but exhibited only local correlations in PD patients and controls.

Conclusion: PD and DLB patients both showed insular dopamine deficits, whereas impairment of thalamic serotonergic pathways was specifically associated with DLB. Longitudinal studies are necessary to determine the clinical value of the assessment of extrastriatal I-FP-CIT SPECT.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00259-019-04324-5DOI Listing
July 2019

Analysis of video-polysomnographic sleep findings in dementia with Lewy bodies.

Mov Disord 2013 Sep 6;28(10):1416-23. Epub 2013 Jun 6.

Sleep Unit, C. Mondino National Institute of Neurology Foundation, IRCCS, Pavia, Italy.

Knowledge of sleep architecture and disorders of nocturnal sleep in dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB) is limited by a lack of systematic video-polysomnographic (video-PSG) investigations. We describe video-PSG findings in 29 consecutive subjects diagnosed with DLB. All the patients underwent a clinical interview and overnight video-PSG monitoring. Twenty-nine nondemented patients with Parkinson's disease (PD) matched for age and sex with the DLB cases were selected for comparison. The DLB subjects showed less 1NREM sleep (P = .000) and more 2NREM sleep (P = .000) than the PD subjects. Sleep apnea (30.7% vs. 34.8%) and periodic limb movements (60.9% versus 50.0%) were frequent in both groups. Disruptive motor behavioral manifestations were more frequent in subjects with DLB (69.6% vs. 26.9%, P = .008) and consisted of not only REM sleep behavior disorder (RBD) but also confusional events (30.3% vs. 3.8%, P = .020) and arousal-related episodes mimicking RBD. Subjects with DLB in whom a sleep disturbance had been the presenting symptom performed better than those with other onset symptoms on both the Mini-Mental State Examination (22.2 ± 4.1 vs. 18.1 ± 4.6, P = .019) and the Frontal Assessment Battery (15.8 vs. 10.3, P = .010). Polysomnographic findings in DLB show a complex mix of overlapping sleep alterations: impaired sleep structure, sleep comorbidities, and various motor-behavioral events (not restricted to RBD). Clinicians should be aware of the possibility of misleading symptoms and of the risk of overlooking sleep comorbidities, and consider performing polysomnographic sleep investigations in selected cases. We found evidence that a sleep disturbance as the presenting symptom might indicate a different phenotype of the disease, characterized by milder cognitive impairment.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/mds.25523DOI Listing
September 2013

High doses of cobalt induce optic and auditory neuropathy.

Exp Toxicol Pathol 2013 Sep 12;65(6):719-27. Epub 2012 Oct 12.

Department of Experimental and Applied Medicine, Section of Occupational Health and Industrial Hygiene, University of Brescia, Italy.

The adverse biological effects of continuous exposure to cobalt and chromium have been well defined. In the past, this toxicity was largely an industrial issue concerning workers exposed in occupational setting. Nevertheless, recent reports have described a specific toxicity mediated by the high levels of cobalt and chromium released by metallic prostheses, particularly in patients who had received hip implants. Clinical symptoms, including blindness, deafness and peripheral neuropathy, suggest a specific neurotropism. However, little is known about the neuropathological basis of this process, and experimental evidence is still lacking. We have investigated this issue in an experimental setting using New Zealand White rabbits treated with repeated intravenous injections of cobalt and chromium, alone or in combination. No evident clinical or pathological alterations were associated after chromium administration alone, despite its high levels in blood and tissue while cobalt-chromium and cobalt-treated rabbits showed clinical signs indicative of auditory and optic system toxicity. On histopathological examination, the animals showed severe retinal and cochlear ganglion cell depletion along with optic nerve damage and loss of sensory cochlear hair cells. Interestingly, the severity of the alterations was related to dosages and time of exposure. These data confirmed our previous observation of severe auditory and optic nerve toxicity in patients exposed to an abnormal release of cobalt and chromium from damaged hip prostheses. Moreover, we have identified the major element mediating neurotoxicity to be cobalt, although the molecular mechanisms mediating this toxicity still have to be defined.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.etp.2012.09.006DOI Listing
September 2013

The role of albumin in human toxicology of cobalt: contribution from a clinical case.

ISRN Hematol 2011 31;2011:690620. Epub 2010 Oct 31.

Section of Occupational Health and Industrial Hygiene, Department of Experimental and Applied Medicine, University of Brescia, P.le Spedali Civili 1, 25123 Brescia, Italy.

The distribution and adverse effects, especially to optic and acoustic nerves, of cobalt released from a hip arthroplasty and its association with albumin were studied. The analysis of cobalt was performed in plasma, whole blood, urine, and cerebrospinal fluid by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS). The fraction of albumin binding the metal was determined by colorimetric assay using dithiothreitol (DTT). In all the biological matrices very high levels of cobalt were measured, but contrary to expected, a higher concentration in whole blood than in plasma was observed. The determination of altered albumin confirmed this hypothesis. This evidence might indicate an alteration in the binding of cobalt to albumin and a consequent increase in the concentration of the diffusible (free) fraction of the metal. This appears an interesting starting point for further investigations for identifying and better understanding cobalt neurotoxicity, apparently not so frequent in occupational medicine and clinical practice.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.5402/2011/690620DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3198613PMC
November 2011

Loss of sight and sound. Could it be the hip?

Lancet 2009 Mar;373(9668):1052

Department of Medical and Surgical Sciences, Unit of Neurology, University of Brescia, Spedali Civili di Brescia, Brescia, Italy.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(09)60490-6DOI Listing
March 2009

Loss of synaptic D1 dopamine/N-methyl-D-aspartate glutamate receptor complexes in L-DOPA-induced dyskinesia in the rat.

Mol Pharmacol 2006 Mar 19;69(3):805-12. Epub 2005 Dec 19.

Division of Pharmacology, Department of Biomedical Sciences and Biotechnology, University of Brescia, Viale Europa 11, 25124 Brescia, Italy.

Glutamate-mediated mechanisms are related to the motor complications of L-DOPA therapy in Parkinson's disease (PD). In striatal postsynaptic densities (PSD), the dopamine D1 receptor (D1R) is part of an oligomeric complex with the glutamate N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR), determining the strength of corticostriatal transmission. We studied D1R/NMDAR complex alterations induced by L-DOPA in the 6-hydroxydopamine-lesioned rat model of PD. L-DOPA-treated hemiparkinsonian rats were determined to be dyskinetic or nondyskinetic based on behavioral testing. D1R/NMDAR assemblies containing NR1-C2 and NR2B subunits were decreased in the PSD of lesioned striatum. Short-term L-DOPA administration improved akinesia and restored the synaptic abundance of D1R, NR1-C2 and NR2B. Prolonged L-DOPA treatment also normalized synaptic D1R/NMDAR complexes in nondyskinetic rats, but remarkably reduced them in the dyskinetic group without changing their interaction. This decrease involved NR1-C2, NR1-C2', NR2A, and NR2B subunits. The composition of residual synaptic D1R/NMDAR complexes in dyskinetic rats may thus be different from that observed in lesioned rats, suggesting that expression of different motor dysfunctions might be related to the receptor profile at corticostriatal synapses. The levels of D1R/NMDAR complexes were unchanged in total striatal membrane proteins, suggesting that the decrease of these species in the PSD is likely to reflect an altered receptor trafficking. In human embryonic kidney 293 cells expressing the D1R/NMDAR, complex costimulation of both D1R and NMDAR, but not individual receptor activation, promoted internalization, suggesting that development of dyskinesias might be related to agonist-mediated down-regulation of the D1R/NMDAR complex at corticostriatal synapses.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1124/mol.105.016667DOI Listing
March 2006

Nerve growth factor induces the re-expression of functional androgen receptors and p75(NGFR) in the androgen-insensitive prostate cancer cell line DU145.

Eur J Endocrinol 2002 Sep;147(3):407-15

Section of Pharmacology, Department of Biomedical Sciences and Biotechnologies, Brescia University Medical School, Via Valsabbina 19, 25123 Brescia, Italy.

Background: One of the paracrine/autocrine factors regulating prostate growth and differentiation is nerve growth factor (NGF). The role of NGF and its receptors in the prostate, however, remains controversial. We have shown that NGF treatment of human prostate cancer cell lines reduced their tumorigenicity, both in vitro and in vivo.

Objective: To investigate the involvement of NGF as a differentiation factor in prostate cancer cells.

Design: We exposed the androgen-independent/androgen receptor (AR)-negative prostate cancer cell line DU145 to NGF to study whether this neurotrophin could revert DU145 cells to a less malignant phenotype.

Methods: DU145 cells were treated with NGF, then ARs and NGF receptor p75(NGFR) expression and telomerase activity were studied. Finally, we investigated whether re-expression of ARs could restore the androgen sensitivity in this cell line.

Results And Conclusions: NGF treatment induced a reversion of DU145 cells to a less malignant phenotype, characterized by the re-expression of ARs and p75(NGFR) NGF receptors. Re-expression of ARs restored the androgen sensitivity, as suggested by the fact that exposure to dihydrotestosterone stimulated the growth of NGF-treated DU145 cells. This effect was blocked by androgen antagonist drugs, such as hydroxyflutamide and cyproterone acetate, which also induced apoptotic death of NGF-treated cells. The hypothesis that a differentiation pathway is activated by exogenous NGF in DU145 cells is also supported by findings indicating that NGF-treated DU145 cells expressed a low telomerase activity, as a result of a decrease in human telomerase reverse transcriptase transcription.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1530/eje.0.1470407DOI Listing
September 2002