Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy in Parkinsonian Disorders

Part of the Contemporary Clinical Neuroscience book series (CCNE)


Parkinsonian disorders are a group of mostly neurodegenerative diseases that affect the basal ganglia. Symptoms include slowness of movement, increased muscle tone, and changes in walking and balance. The most common form of parkinsonism is idiopathic Parkinson’s disease. Currently, only symptomatic treatments are available. These treatments can improve symptoms and quality of life, but do not prevent neurodegeneration or slow the course of disease.

By detecting metabolic changes in specific brain regions, magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS) shows promise in helping to distinguish between different types of parkinsonian disorders, to aid in early diagnosis, and potentially to track disease progression. However, heterogeneous results are common in the literature to date, in part due to differences in patient characteristics, brain regions examined, evolving MRS techniques, and the effects of medications.

This chapter reviews the clinical and pathological features of parkinsonian disorders and MRS studies in these disorders and describes the use of animal models to further investigate the connection between MRS findings and pathological brain changes.


Parkinson’s disease Parkinsonism Alpha-synuclein Progressive supranuclear palsy Multiple system atrophy Dementia with Lewy bodies Corticobasal degeneration 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Health SciencesPurdue UniversityWest LafayetteUSA
  2. 2.Department of Radiology and Imaging SciencesIndiana University School of MedicineIndianapolisUSA
  3. 3.Department of NeurologyIndiana University School of MedicineIndianapolisUSA

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