Biomarkers for Parkinson’s Disease: How Good Are They?
Tianbai Li 1,2 • Weidong Le 1,2
1 Center for Clinical Research on Neurological Diseases, the First Affiliated Hospital, Dalian Medical University, Dalian 116021, China
2 Liaoning Provincial Key Laboratory for Research on the Pathogenic Mechanisms of Neurological Diseases, the First Affiliated Hospital, Dalian Medical University, Dalian 116021, China
Parkinson’s disease (PD) is a complex neurodegenerative disorder with no cure in sight. Clinical challenges of the disease include the inability to make a definitive diagnosis at the early stages and difficulties in predicting the disease progression. The unmet demand to identify reliable biomarkers for early diagnosis and management of the disease course of PD has attracted a lot of attention. However, only a few reported candidate biomarkers have been tried in clinical practice at the present time. Studies on PD biomarkers have often overemphasized the discovery of novel identity, whereas efforts to further evaluate such candidates are rare. Therefore, we update the new development of biomarker discovery in PD and discuss the standard process in the evaluation and assessment of the diagnostic or prognostic value of the identified potential PD biomarkers in this review article. Recent developments in combined biomarkers and the current status of clinical trials of biomarkers as outcome measures are also discussed. We believe that the combination of different biomarkers might enhance the specificity and sensitivity over a single measure that might not be sufficient for such a multiplex disease.
Parkinson’s disease; Biomarkers; Combined biomarkers; Clinical trials