Frontotemporal dementia with ubiquitinated neuronal inclusions presenting with primary lateral sclerosis and parkinsonism: clinicopathological report of an autopsy case

Acta Neuropathol. 2004 Apr;107(4):377-80. doi: 10.1007/s00401-003-0818-7. Epub 2004 Feb 5.


We report a case displaying upper motor sign, parkinsonism, and behavioral abnormality, with marked degeneration of the precentral cortex, neostriatum and frontotemporal lobes, as well as ubiquitinated neuronal inclusions. The patient was a 66-year-old male at the time of death. At age 57, he noticed progressive difficulties in speaking and swallowing. At age 60, he was severely anarthric and displayed emotional lability and incontinence. Neurologically, very poor movement of tongue was observed, but without atrophy or fasciculation. Deep tendon reflexes were hyperactive. Grasp reflex and snout reflex were also positive. Needle electromyography revealed no abnormalities. A diagnosis of primary lateral sclerosis and character change was made. At age 62, he developed bradykinesia and rigidity of the neck and all extremities. Treatment with carbidopa-levodopa was initiated, but resulted in minimal improvement. At age 65, he was bed-ridden, and had repeated occurrences of aspiration pneumonia; he died of pneumonia. Neuropathological examination revealed marked atrophy of the frontal and temporal lobes with Betz cells completely absent and moderate atrophy of the neostriatum. The spinal cord and nerve roots appeared normal. Immunohistochemically, ubiquitin-positive but tau-negative intraneuronal inclusions were found in the frontal and temporal cortices, including the precentral cortex and the hippocampal dentate gyrus, and the neostriatum. This case could be included with inclusion-associated disorders such as frontotemporal dementia or amyotrophic lateral sclerosis with dementia, and furthermore, predominant upper motor sign and parkinsonism could represent phenotypes of clinical manifestations with such inclusions.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Cerebral Cortex / metabolism
  • Cerebral Cortex / pathology
  • Dementia / complications*
  • Humans
  • Immunohistochemistry / methods
  • Inclusion Bodies / metabolism*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Motor Neuron Disease / etiology*
  • Neurons / metabolism*
  • Neurons / pathology
  • Parkinsonian Disorders / etiology*
  • Postmortem Changes
  • Pyramidal Tracts / pathology
  • Ubiquitin / metabolism*


  • Ubiquitin