Date of Award
Master of Science
Dr. Charles Ide
Masters Thesis-Campus Only
Multiple system atrophy (MSA) is a sporadic neurodegenerative disease with unknown etiology, involving symptoms of Parkinson's disease, autonomic failure, and olivopontocerebellar atrophy. To define a possible relationship between immune cells and loss of Purkinje cells in MSA, I measured the incidence of CD68+ positive microglia/ macrophages directly associated with calbindin+ Purkinje cell bodies and/or their axons and dendrites. MSA patients showed fewer Purkinje cell bodies (p=0.001), dendrites (p=0.044), and axons (p=0.002), and decreased area of staining for calbindin in cerebellar tracts (p=0.027). Controls patients had larger and more circular Purkinje cell bodies (p=0.002; p=0.01, respectively). A greater density of CD68 staining directly associated with calbindin-stained profiles occurred only in MSA cerebellar tracts (p=0.043). These results indicate that the loss of Purkinje cell bodies and their processes are not due to direct spatial association with CD68 cells.
Bostic, Ashley A., "CD68 Immune Cell Involvement in Purkinje Cell Degeneration in the Cerebellum of Multiple System Atrophy Patients" (2012). Master's Theses. 46.