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VOLUME 37, ISSUE 03

REM SLEEP BEHAVIORAL EVENTS: A NEW MARKER FOR EARLY PARKINSON DISEASE
Rapid Eye Movement Sleep Behavioral Events: A New Marker for Neurodegeneration in Early Parkinson Disease?

http://dx.doi.org/10.5665/sleep.3468

Friederike Sixel-Döring, MD1,2; Ellen Trautmann, PhD1,3; Brit Mollenhauer, MD1,4,5; Claudia Trenkwalder, MD1,4

1Paracelsus-Elena-Klinik, Kassel, Germany; 2Department of Neurology, Philipps-University Marburg, Germany; 3Department of Psychology, University Kassel, Germany; 4Department of Neurosurgery, Georg-August University Goettingen, Germany; 5Department of Neuropathology, Georg-August University, Goettingen, Germany



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Objective:

To analyze potential markers in sleep for early recognition of neurodegenerative disease in newly diagnosed, unmedicated patients with Parkinson disease (PD) compared to controls.

Methods:

Videopolysomnography (vPSG) was available in 158 newly diagnosed, unmedicated patients with PD and 110 age-, sex-, and education-matched healthy controls (HC). Rapid eye movement (REM) sleep was analyzed for REM without atonia (RWA) and studied by review of time-synchronized video. Motor behaviors and/or vocalizations in REM sleep with a purposeful component other than comfort moves were identified as REM sleep behavioral events (RBE). Two or more events had to be present to be classified as “RBE positive.” RBE subjects included rapid eye movement sleep behavior disorder (RBD) and non-RBD subjects based on the presence or absence of RWA > 18.2%.

Results:

RBE were detected in 81 of 158 patients with de novo PD (51%) and 17 of 110 HC (15%) (P < 0.001). RBD was identified in 40/81 RBE-positive patients with PD (25% of all PD patients) and 2 of 17 RBE-positive HC (2% of all controls). RBE-positive patients showed no specific motor or neuropsychological features compared to RBE-negative patients. Patients with PD and HC with RBE had more REM sleep (P = 0.002) and a higher periodic leg movements in sleep index (P = 0.022) compared to subjects without RBE.

Conclusion:

This first description of REM sleep behavioral events (RBE) shows it occurs more frequently in patients with de novo Parkinson disease (PD) than in healthy controls and may be an early sign of neurodegeneration and precede rapid eye movement sleep behavior disorder (RBD). There is no specific phenotype of PD associated with newly defined RBE or RBD at this early stage.

Citation:

Sixel-Döring F; Trautmann E; Mollenhauer B; Trenkwalder C. Rapid eye movement sleep behavioral events: a new marker for neurodegeneration in early Parkinson disease? SLEEP 2014;37(3):431-438.

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