Cardiac sympathetic denervation preceding motor signs in Parkinson disease

David S. Goldstein, Yehonatan Sharabi, Barbara I. Karp, Oladi Bentho, Ahmed Saleem, Karel Pacak, Graeme Eisenhofer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

81 Scopus citations


There is substantial interest in identifying biomarkers to detect early Parkinson disease (PD). Cardiac noradrenergic denervation and attenuated baroreflex-cardiovagal function occur in de novo PD, but whether these abnormalities can precede PD has been unknown. Here we report the case of a patient who had profoundly decreased left ventricular myocardial 6-[ 18F]fluorodopamine-derived radioactivity and low baroreflex- cardiovagal gain, 4 years before the onset of symptoms and signs of PD. The results lead us to hypothesize that cardiac noradrenergic denervation and decreased baroreflex-cardiovagal function may occur early in the pathogenesis of PD.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)118-121
Number of pages4
JournalClinical Autonomic Research
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2007


  • Autonomic nervous system
  • Baroreflex
  • Heart
  • Imaging techniques
  • Parkinson disease
  • Sympathetic nervous system


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