Familial Parkinsonism, Dementia, and Lewy body disease: Study of family G

Melody A. Denson, Zbigniew K. Wszolek, Ronald F. Pfeiffer, Elzbieta K. Wszolek, Tanya M. Paschall, Rodney D. McComb

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

47 Scopus citations


Genetic influences are thought by many to play an important role in the cause of Parkinson's disease. We studied two closely intermarried families (Family G) whose ancestors immigrated to the United States from Russia. We investigated this family clinically, genealogically, and pathologically. Our pedigree contained 102 members spanning six generations, with 10 affected individuals and 1 affected spouse. Detailed telephone interviews were conducted with affected individuals, with their spouses, and with their at- risk siblings. Medical records of deceased and living affected patients were collected. Physical examinations were performed on 7 at-risk and 5 affected persons. Typical levodopa-responsive parkinsonism with bradykinesia, rigidity, resting tremor, and impaired postural reflexes was seen in 4 members, dementia was present in 3, and 3 had both dementia and parkinsonism. An autopsy completed on 1 individual, our index case, demonstrated Lewy bodies in the brainstem and neocortex and ubiquitin-positive neuritic degeneration in the CA2-3 region of the hippocampus, consistent with the limbic (transitional) form of Lewy body disease. This family is distinct both clinically and pathologically from several previously reported parkinsonian kindreds.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)638-643
Number of pages6
JournalAnnals of neurology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 1997

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology


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