Evaluation of dopaminergic function in frontotemporal dementia using I-FP-CIT single photon emission computed tomography

Neurodegener Dis. 2007;4(5):382-5. doi: 10.1159/000105159. Epub 2007 Jul 6.


Extrapyramidal symptoms are observed in frontotemporal dementia (FTD). (123)I-FP-CIT (DaT scan) single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) can detect loss of presynaptic dopamine transporters in the striatum. We aimed to evaluate the dopaminergic status of the striatum in patients with FTD using DaT scan. Seven patients (age range 65-76 years), who fulfilled the Neary criteria and in whom the diagnosis of FTD was confirmed by hexamethylpropyleneamine oxime SPECT, were included in the study. The severity of the extrapyramidal symptoms was evaluated by the motor part of the Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale (UPDRS). SPECT using (123)I-FP-CIT was done. A (region - occipital)/occipital ratio was calculated for the striatum, putamen and caudate nucleus. The results were compared with those of the 7 age-matched normal controls. The uptake of the radiotracer in the right and left striatum was reduced to 62% (p = 0.000) and 68% (p = 0.000), respectively, compared to controls. The motor UPDRS score of the patients with FTD showed a negative correlation to the uptake of the radiotracer. The presynaptic dopamine transporter in FTD is impaired, related to the severity of the extrapyramidal symptoms. Since an effective treatment for FTD is still to be established, there is a need for evaluating the efficacy of dopaminergic drugs.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Basal Ganglia Diseases / diagnostic imaging
  • Basal Ganglia Diseases / etiology
  • Basal Ganglia Diseases / physiopathology
  • Brain / diagnostic imaging*
  • Brain / metabolism
  • Brain / physiopathology*
  • Corpus Striatum / metabolism
  • Corpus Striatum / physiopathology
  • Dementia / diagnostic imaging*
  • Dementia / metabolism
  • Dementia / physiopathology*
  • Dopamine / metabolism*
  • Dopamine Plasma Membrane Transport Proteins / analysis
  • Dopamine Plasma Membrane Transport Proteins / metabolism
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hypokinesia / diagnostic imaging
  • Hypokinesia / etiology
  • Hypokinesia / physiopathology
  • Male
  • Muscle Rigidity / diagnostic imaging
  • Muscle Rigidity / etiology
  • Muscle Rigidity / physiopathology
  • Tomography, Emission-Computed, Single-Photon / methods*
  • Tropanes


  • Dopamine Plasma Membrane Transport Proteins
  • Tropanes
  • 2-carbomethoxy-8-(3-fluoropropyl)-3-(4-iodophenyl)tropane
  • Dopamine