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Association between Change in Normal Appearing White Matter Metabolites and Intrathecal Inflammation in Natalizumab-Treated Multiple Sclerosis
Linköping University, Department of Clinical and Experimental Medicine, Neurology. Linköping University, Faculty of Health Sciences. Östergötlands Läns Landsting, Local Health Care Services in Central Östergötland, Department of Neurology.
Linköping University, Center for Medical Image Science and Visualization, CMIV. Linköping University, Department of Medical and Health Sciences, Radiation Physics. Linköping University, Faculty of Health Sciences. Östergötlands Läns Landsting, Centre for Surgery, Orthopaedics and Cancer Treatment, Department of Radiation Physics UHL.
Linköping University, Center for Medical Image Science and Visualization, CMIV. Linköping University, Department of Medical and Health Sciences, Radiation Physics. Linköping University, Faculty of Health Sciences.
Linköping University, Center for Medical Image Science and Visualization, CMIV. Linköping University, Department of Medical and Health Sciences, Radiology. Linköping University, Faculty of Health Sciences. Östergötlands Läns Landsting, Centre for Surgery, Orthopaedics and Cancer Treatment, Department of Radiation Physics UHL.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-8857-5698
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2012 (English)In: PLoS ONE, ISSN 1932-6203, E-ISSN 1932-6203, Vol. 7, no 9, e44739- p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Background: Multiple sclerosis (MS) is associated not only with focal inflammatory lesions but also diffuse pathology in the central nervous system (CNS). Since there is no firm association between the amount of focal inflammatory lesions and disease severity, diffuse pathology in normal appearing white matter (NAWM) may be crucial for disease progression. Immunomodulating treatments for MS reduce the number of focal lesions, but possible effects on diffuse white matter pathology are less studied. Furthermore, it is not known whether intrathecal levels of inflammatory or neurodegenerative markers are associated with development of pathology in NAWM.

Methods: Quantitative proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy (1H-MRS) was used to investigate NAWM in 27 patients with relapsing MS before and after one year of treatment with natalizumab as well as NAWM in 20 healthy controls at baseline. Changes in 1H-MRS metabolite concentrations during treatment were also correlated with a panel of intrathecal markers of inflammation and neurodegeneration in 24 of these 27 patients.

Results: The group levels of 1H-MRS metabolite concentrations were unchanged pre-to posttreatment, but a pattern of high magnitude correlation coefficients (r = 0.43–0.67, p<0.0005–0.03) were found between changes in individual metabolite concentrations (total creatine and total choline) and levels of pro-inflammatory markers (IL-1β and CXCL8).

Conclusions: Despite a clinical improvement and a global decrease in levels of inflammatory markers in cerebrospinal fluid during treatment, high levels of pro-inflammatory CXCL8 and IL-1β were associated with an increase in 1H-MRS metabolites indicative of continued gliosis development and membrane turnover in NAWM.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2012. Vol. 7, no 9, e44739- p.
National Category
Medical and Health Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-84270DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0044739ISI: 000309742800016OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-84270DiVA: diva2:558412
Note

funding agencies|Swedish Society of Neurologically Disabled||Swedish Society of Medicine||National Research Council (VR/NT)||University Hospital of Linkoping||County Council of Ostergotland||Teva||Biogen Idec||

Available from: 2012-10-03 Created: 2012-10-03 Last updated: 2017-12-07
In thesis
1. Immunological Mechanisms and Natalizumab Treatment in Multiple Sclerosis: Studies on lymphocytes, inflammatory markers and magnetic resonance spectroscopy
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Immunological Mechanisms and Natalizumab Treatment in Multiple Sclerosis: Studies on lymphocytes, inflammatory markers and magnetic resonance spectroscopy
2012 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Background: Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a chronic inflammatory, demyelinating disease of the central nervous system (CNS), and a frequent cause of neurological disability among young adults. In addition to focal inflammatory demyelinated lesions, diffuse white matter pathology as well as a neurodegenerative component with accumulating axonal damage and gliosis have been demonstrated and contribute to MS disease characteristics. The inflammatory component is considered autoimmune and mediated by auto-reactive T lymphocytes together with other cell populations of the immune system and their respective products like cytokines and chemokines. Treatment with natalizumab, a monoclonal antibody directed against the α4β1-integrin (VLA-4), reduces migration of potential disease-promoting cells to the CNS. The efficacy of natalizumab in reducing relapses and MRI activity is evident, however associated effects on the immune response and the neurodegenerative component in MS are not clear.

Methods: In total 72 MS patients were included, distributed among paper I-IV. We investigated effects associated with one-year natalizumab treatment in 31 MS patients regarding cytokine and chemokine levels in CSF and blood using multiplex bead assay analyses (paper I), as well as treatment effects on blood lymphocyte composition in 40 patients using flow cytometry, including functional assays of lymphocyte activation (paper II). Normal appearing white matter (NAWM) metabolite concentrations were assessed with proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy (1H-MRS) in 27 MS patients before and after one year of treatment (paper III). We also evaluated the balance between circulating T helper (Th) subsets in 33 MS patients using gene expression analyses of the CD4+ T cell related transcription factors in whole blood (paper IV).

Results: One-year natalizumab treatment was associated with a marked decline in pro-inflammatory cytokines (IL-1β and IL-6) and chemokines (CXCL8, CXCL9, CXCL10 and CXCL11) intrathecally. Circulating plasma levels of some cytokines (GM-CSF, TNF, IL-6 and IL-10) also decreased after treatment. Natalizumab treatment was further associated with an increase in lymphocyte numbers of major populations in blood (total lymphocytes, T cells, T helper cells, cytotoxic T cells, NK cells and B cells). In addition, T cell responsiveness to recall antigens and mitogens was restored after treatment. As to 1H-MRS metabolite concentrations in NAWM, no change in levels were detected post-to pretreatment on a group level. However, correlation analyses between one-year change in metabolite levels (total creatine and total choline) and levels of pro-inflammatory IL-1β and CXCL8 showed a pattern of high magnitude correlation coefficients (r=0.43-0.67). Gene expression analyses demonstrated a systemically reduced expression of transcription factors related to immunoregulatory T cell populations (regulatory T cells and Th2) in relapsing MS compared with controls.

Conclusions: Our findings support that an important mode of action of natalizumab is reducing lymphocyte extravasation, although cell-signalling effects through VLA-4 also may be operative. Correlation analyses between changes 1H-MRS metabolite concentrations and inflammatory markers possibly point towards an association between intrathecal inflammation and gliosis development in NAWM. Finally, gene expression analyses indicate a systemic defect at the mRNA level in relapsing MS, involving downregulation of beneficial CD4+ phenotypes.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Linköping: Linköping University Electronic Press, 2012. 83 p.
Series
Linköping University Medical Dissertations, ISSN 0345-0082 ; 1332
National Category
Medical and Health Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-84274 (URN)978-91-7519-787-6 (ISBN)
Public defence
2012-11-02, Berzeliussalen, Campus US, Linköpings universitet, Linköping, 09:00 (Swedish)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2012-10-03 Created: 2012-10-03 Last updated: 2012-10-24Bibliographically approved
2. The Non-Invasive Brain Biopsy: Implementation and Application of Quantitative Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy on Healthy and Diseased Human Brain
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The Non-Invasive Brain Biopsy: Implementation and Application of Quantitative Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy on Healthy and Diseased Human Brain
2012 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Introduction: In this thesis, one of the major objectives was to implement a method for (absolute) quantitative magnetic resonance spectroscopy (qMRS) of the human brain, intended for clinical use. The implemented method was based on standard spatially selective MRS sequences. The tissue water was used as an internal reference, which was calibrated using whole brain quantitative magnetic resonance imaging (qMRI). The second objective was to apply the method in clinical neuroimaging investigation, of different disease processes in the human brain.

Materials and Methods: In total, 158 subjects were included and 507 MRS measurements (330 in white matter and 177 in the thalamus) were acquired.

In a cross-sectional study of multiple sclerosis (MS), 35 ‘clinically definite MS’ (CDMS) patients were included, of which 15 were atypical CDMS patients with a very low number of white matter lesions (two or fewer), and 20 were typical CDMS patients with white matter lesions (three or more) were included. The metabolite concentrations in normal appearing white matter (NAWM) and the thalamus were assessed using the qMRS method developed in this thesis, and the brain parenchymal fraction (BPF) was calculated from the qMRI data. A cohort of 27 CDMS patients were then treated with Natalizumab and examined both at baseline, and after one year of treatment. Both qMRS and CSF samples for the purpose of assessing intrathecal inflammation were obtained. In addition, the frontal deep white matter (FDWM) and the thalamus were investigated in 20 idiopathic normal pressure hydrocephalus (iNPH) patients using qMRS. Finally, the left thalamus of 14 Kleine-Levin Syndrome (KLS) patients were examined using both qMRS and functional MRI (fMRI) of neurological activation of the left thalamus during a working memory test. Moreover, 63 healthy subjects were included as controls for this work.

Results: A quantitative MRS method based on water referencing was successfully developed, implemented, and evaluated at 1.5 T. Both healthy subjects and MS patients showed a positive correlation between the concentrations of total Creatine (tCr) and myo Inositol (mIns) and age, and also a negative correlation with BPF were observed. Glutamate and Glutamine (Glx) levels were elevated for all MS patient groups compared to healthy controls. In contrast, lower concentrations of total N-acetyl aspartate and N-acetyl aspartate glutamate (tNA) and higher mIns concentrations in NAWM were only observed in MS patients that had developed white matter lesions. Moreover, the change in concentrations of tCr and total Choline (tCho) in MS patients during Natalizumab-treatment were positively correlated with markers of intrathecal inflammation. The iNPH patients had lower tNA and N-acetyl aspartate (NAA) concentrations in the thalamus compared to the controls. In addition, the NAA concentrations in the left thalamus were inversely correlated to the fMRI activation in the left thalamus during the working memory test in KLS patients.

Discussion: The calculated calibration factors were in good agreement with the results found in the literature, indicating that the calibration factors were accurate.

The observed elevated Glx concentration in MS could be due to increased concentrations of glutamate (Glu), which is neurotoxic at high concentrations, thus the elevated Glx could be linked to the clinically observed neurodegeneration in MS both in patients that have developed lesions and in atypical patients that do not develop any (or extremely few) lesions.

Both tCr and mIns can be used as glia markers, thus the correlations of tCr and mIns concentrations with both age and BPF indicates that the local glia cell density, or tissue fraction, increases with age and atrophy. Moreover, the higher mIns concentrations in the NAWM of MS patients with a substantial white matter lesion load indicate that the glia tissue amount in NAWM is increased in MS patients that develop lesions. NAA is neuronal-specific, thus the lower tNA concentrations indicate that the neurone concentration is lower in the NAWM of MS patients that develop MS lesions. The lack of correlation between tNA with age and BPF in combination with the presence of correlation between tCr and mIns with both age and BPF, might be explained using a model for neurodegeneration. In which, there is a higher neurone loss compared to the glia loss. However, the lost tissue is compensated by compression of the tissue, which keeps the density of neurones more or less constant and the density of glia increased.

The low concentration levels of the neuronal marker NAA in the thalamus of the iNPH patients indicates that the basal ganglia-thalamic-subcortical frontal circuits are damage or at least strongly modulated in the thalamus.

The correlation between strong activation in left thalamus during a working memory test with the neuronal marker NAA indicate that the KLS patients that have low neuronal concentration also needed to utilise the working memory circuitry more heavily in order to perform the task as healthy subjects.

Conclusion: It is possible to use qMRI for accurate and robust determination of qMRS in clinical practice, even at 1.5 T field strength. The tGlx concentration may be an important marker for pathology in the nonlesional white matter of MS-patients. The increased glia and loss of neurones in the NAWM are associated with the formation of white matter lesions.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Linköping: Linköping University Electronic Press, 2012. 69 p.
Series
Linköping University Medical Dissertations, ISSN 0345-0082 ; 1328
National Category
Medical and Health Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-85929 (URN)978-91-7519-795-1 (ISBN)
Public defence
2012-12-21, Elsa Brändströmsalen, Campus US, Linköpings universitet, Linköping, 13:00 (Swedish)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2012-12-03 Created: 2012-12-03 Last updated: 2014-10-02Bibliographically approved

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Mellergård, JohanTisell, AndersDahlqvist Leinhard, OlofBlystad, IdaLandtblom, Anne-MarieDahle, CharlotteErnerudh, JanLundberg, PeterVrethem, Magnus
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