By Dr. Eric WeillCornell Neurology provides a unique opportunity to investigate the neurophysiology of neurological symptoms in patients with neurological diseases, according to the Mayo Clinic.
Cornell researchers studied nearly 2,000 people with neurological conditions, including chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis and traumatic brain injury.
Researchers said they found that those with more severe neurological symptoms had significantly higher levels of C-reactive protein (CRP), which is a marker for inflammation.CRP levels are a common finding in patients experiencing neurologic symptoms, and researchers noted that these symptoms are often associated with the buildup of plaque, or thickening of the brain tissue.
The Mayo Clinic researchers also found that the severity of neurological illness is strongly related to the type of medication a patient is on.
They found that, overall, the risk of developing C-REACTors in patients was three times higher than in those on a placebo medication.
Weill said, “This is the first study to directly examine the link between neurological symptoms and the level of CRP and CRP-related biomarkers in people who are taking certain medications.”
Cornell neuroscientists believe that these biomarkers might help to identify individuals who have a predisposition to developing CREATs and can therefore be better targeted in treatment.
Weill and his colleagues also plan to investigate whether medications with CRP are associated with any specific neurologic illness.
The researchers also analyzed the levels of cytokines and chemokines in patients.
CRP is a protein found in blood, saliva and urine, and chemo is an antibiotic that destroys this protein.
We have not found any evidence to suggest that CRP levels can predict the onset of any neurologic condition, said Weill.
But the researchers note that the biomarkers are very sensitive and can reveal important information about a patient’s current condition.
The research is published in the journal Neurology.