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Prevalence of Concomitant Pathologies in Parkinson's Disease: Implications for Prognosis, Diagnosis, and Insights into Common Pathogenic Mechanisms

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Lauren WalkerORCiD, Professor Johannes Attems



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License (CC BY-NC 4.0).


Pathologies characteristic of Alzheimer's disease (i.e., hyperphosphorylated tau and amyloid-β (Aβ) plaques), cardiovascular disease, and limbic predominant TDP-43 encephalopathy (LATE) often co-exist in patients with Parkinson's disease (PD), in addition to Lewy body pathology (α-synuclein). Numerous studies point to a putative synergistic relationship between hyperphosphorylation tau, Aβ, cardiovascular lesions, and TDP-43 with α-synuclein, which may alter the stereotypical pattern of pathological progression and accelerate cognitive decline. Here we discuss the prevalence and relationships between common concomitant pathologies observed in PD. In addition, we highlight shared genetic risk factors and developing biomarkers that may provide better diagnostic accuracy for patients with PD that have co-existing pathologies. The tremendous heterogeneity observed across the PD spectrum is most likely caused by the complex interplay between pathogenic, genetic, and environmental factors, and increasing our understanding of how these relate to idiopathic PD will drive research into finding accurate diagnostic tools and disease modifying therapies.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Walker L, Attems J

Publication type: Review

Publication status: Published

Journal: Journal of Parkinson's Disease

Year: 2024

Volume: 14

Issue: 1

Pages: 35-52

Online publication date: 23/01/2024

Acceptance date: 11/11/2023

ISSN (electronic): 1877-7171


DOI: 10.3233/JPD-230154

PubMed id: 38143370