Cerebrospinal fluid concentrations of inflammatory markers in Parkinson's disease and atypical parkinsonian disorders

Sci Rep. 2018 Sep 5;8(1):13276. doi: 10.1038/s41598-018-31517-z.


Inflammation has been implicated in the pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease (PD). We here investigate levels of inflammatory biomarkers in cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) in PD and atypical parkinsonian disorders (APD) compared with neurologically healthy controls. We included 131 patients with PD and 27 PD with dementia (PDD), 24 with multiple system atrophy (MSA), 14 with progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP) and 50 controls, all part of the Swedish BioFINDER study. CSF was analyzed for CRP, SAA, IL-6, IL-8, YKL-40 and MCP-1 (CCL2) as well as α-synuclein (α-syn), tau, tau phosphorylated at Thr181 (P-tau), Aβ42 and NfL. In this exploratory study, we found higher levels of the inflammatory biomarker SAA in PDD and MSA compared with controls and PD and higher levels of CRP in PDD and MSA compared with PD. YKL-40 was lower in PD compared with controls. There were multiple positive correlations between the inflammatory markers, α-syn and markers of neuroaxonal injury (NfL and tau). In PD, higher levels of inflammatory biomarkers correlated with worse motor function and cognitive impairment. Thus, inflammatory biomarkers were increased in PDD and MSA. Furthermore, inflammatory biomarkers correlated with more severe disease regarding motor symptoms and cognitive impairment in PD, indicating an association between inflammation and more aggressive disease course. However, the results need confirmation in follow-up studies.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Amyloid beta-Peptides / cerebrospinal fluid
  • Biomarkers / cerebrospinal fluid
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Disease Progression
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Parkinson Disease / cerebrospinal fluid*
  • Parkinson Disease / diagnosis
  • Parkinson Disease / metabolism
  • Peptide Fragments / cerebrospinal fluid
  • alpha-Synuclein / cerebrospinal fluid
  • tau Proteins / cerebrospinal fluid


  • Amyloid beta-Peptides
  • Biomarkers
  • Peptide Fragments
  • alpha-Synuclein
  • tau Proteins

Supplementary concepts

  • Parkinson Disease, Familial, Type 1