Introduction: The efficacy of pharmacotherapy and deep brain stimulation of the subthalamic nucleus in treating Parkinson's disease motor symptoms is highly variable and may be influenced by patient genotype. The relatively common (prevalence about one in three) and protein-altering rs6265 single nucleotide polymorphism (C > T) in the gene BDNF has been associated with different clinical outcomes with levodopa. Objective: We sought to replicate this reported association in early-stage Parkinson's disease subjects and to examine whether a difference in clinical outcomes was present with subthalamic nucleus deep brain stimulation. Materials and Methods: Fifteen deep brain stimulation and 13 medical therapy subjects were followed for 24 months as part of the Vanderbilt DBS in Early Stage PD clinical trial (NCT00282152, FDA IDE #G050016). Primary outcome measures were the Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale (UPDRS) and Parkinson's Disease Questionnaire-39. Results: Outcomes with drug therapy in subjects carrying the rs6265 T allele were significantly worse following 12 months of treatment compared to C/C subjects (UPDRS: +20 points, p = 0.019; PDQ-39: +16 points, p = 0.018). In contrast, rs6265 genotype had no effect on overall motor response to subthalamic nucleus deep brain stimulation at any time point; further, rs6265 C/C subjects treated with stimulation were associated with worse UPDRS part II scores at 24 months compared to medical therapy. Conclusions: Genotyping for the rs6265 polymorphism may be useful for predicting long-term response to drug therapy and counseling Parkinson's disease patients regarding whether to consider earlier subthalamic nucleus deep brain stimulation. Validation in a larger cohort of early-stage Parkinson's disease subjects is warranted.
- Brain-derived neurotrophic factor
- Parkinson disease
- subthalamic nucleus deep brain stimulation
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Neurology
- Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine