Objective: To comprehensively assess whether neopterin in urine could be a candidate biomarker for determining the neuroinflammatory status in ALS. Methods: We performed an observational, cross-sectional study in 81 pALS, 68 age- and sex-comparable healthy controls (HC), 14 patients affected by MS and 24 OND patients. ALS patients underwent a neurological evaluation to assess the global functional status evaluated by Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis Functional Rating Scale—Revised (ALSFRS-R) and the disease progression rate. Urinary neopterin concentrations were determined by high-performance liquid chromatography method and were recorded at the time of first examination to assess their effect on disease severity and survival. Results: Urinary neopterin was significantly higher in pALS (263.90 [198.71–474.90]) compared to MS (155.28 [131.74–190.38], p = <.001), OND patients (205.60 [158.96–299.41], p = 0.04) and HC (169.55 [134.91–226.10], p <.001). Moreover, a significant negative correlation was found between neopterin level and the severity of symptoms evaluated by ALSFRS-R total score (r = − 0.46, p <.001) and its subscores (bulbar r = − 0.34, p = 0.002; motor r = − 0.33, p = 0.003; respiratory r = − 0.53, p <.001), also adjusting for the effect of sex, site of onset, age at evaluation and time from onset to evaluation. Conclusions: Our finding indicates that urine neopterin is elevated in ALS, emphasizing the role of the cell-mediated inflammation in the disease. Moreover, whether confirmed in further studies, our results will underline the neopterin’s potential use as non-invasive clinical biomarker of ALS, to discriminate patients possibly candidates to clinical interventions aimed to interfere the neuroinflammatory processes.
- Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Neurology