Parkinson's disease: neuron loss in the nucleus basalis without concomitant Alzheimer's disease

Ann Neurol. 1984 May;15(5):415-8. doi: 10.1002/ana.410150503.


A representative region of the nucleus basalis of Meynert was investigated in 11 patients with idiopathic Parkinson's disease and compared with the identical region in 13 age-matched control subjects. Simultaneously, the cerebral cortex and the nucleus basalis in the patients with Parkinson's disease were examined for senile plaques and Alzheimer's neurofibrillary tangles. The nucleus basalis was significantly depleted of its large neurons in Parkinson's disease (p less than 0.001 versus controls; Student t tests), but in the majority of cases the neuron loss was not associated with Alzheimer's disease.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Basal Ganglia / pathology*
  • Cell Count
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Parkinson Disease / pathology*
  • Substantia Innominata / pathology*