Patients in whom the disease appears between the third and fifth

Patients in whom the disease appears between the third and fifth decades belong to an intermediate type, and usually show ataxia and choreoathetosis (early-adult type). MRI findings of DRPLA are characterized by atrophic

changes in the cerebellum, pons, brain stem and cerebrum (Fig. 1a,b). High-signal lesions in the cerebral white matter, globus pallidus, thalamus, midbrain and pons on T2-weighted MRI have been often found in adult patients with long disease durations (Fig. 1c).8 At autopsy, the thickening of the skull is a significant feature of DRPLA. Macroscopically, the brain is generally small. The cerebrum, brain stem and cerebellum are DMXAA price relatively well proportioned in external GDC-0068 mouse appearance. The spinal cord

is proportionately small in size. There is no correlation between brain weight and clinical factors such as age at onset, age at death and disease duration, and between brain weight and CAG repeat size. On cut surface, the brain reveals atrophy and brownish-tan discoloration of the globus pallidus (Fig. 2), subthalamic nucleus (Luys body), and dentate nucleus. The atrophy of the brain stem tegmentum, being more marked in the pontine tegmentum, is also remarkable. The cerebral cortical atrophy is slight or negligible. However, almost every case shows mild to moderate dilatation of the lateral ventricle. Combined degeneration of the dentatorubral and pallidoluysian systems is the major pathological feature of DRPLA. The globus pallidus, especially the lateral segment (Fig. 3a), and the dentate nucleus are consistently involved, showing loss of neurons and astrocytosis. The subthalamic nucleus also shows loss of neurons (Fig. 3b). The loss of neurons is Abiraterone cost always milder than that of the lateral segment of the globus pallidus.

In the dentate nucleus, the remaining neurons are often swollen or shrunken with so-called “grumose degeneration”: numerous eosinophilic and argytophilic granular materials, which represent the secondary change of the axon terminals of Purkinje cells, accumulating around the somata and dendrites. In the red nucleus, definite astrocytosis is seen, but loss of neurons is usually not evident. In general, pallidoluysian degeneration is more marked than dentatorubral degeneration in the juvenile-type DRPLA, and the reverse is often seen in the late-adult type. The population of cerebral cortical neurons appears to be mildly or slightly decreased. In some cases, especially in the adult-onset cases, diffuse myelin pallor with slight gliosis is also evident in the white matter. In DRPLA, various other brain regions may be affected mildly or moderately, but it is also important to note that the substantia nigra, the locus ceruleus, the pontine nuclei and the cranial nerve nuclei, with the exception of vestibular nuclei, are well preserved. The gene for DRPLA was identified in 1994,9,10 and mapped to 12p13.

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