Differentiation between Parkinson’s disease and the parkinsonian subtype of multiple system atrophy using the magnetic resonance T1w/T2w ratio in the middle cerebellar peduncle


  • J. Wang
  • A. Sugiyama
  • H. Yokota
  • S. Hirano
  • T. Yamamoto
  • Y. Yamanaka
  • N. Araki
  • S. Ito
  • F. Paul
  • S. Kuwabara


  • Diagnostics


  • Diagnostics 14 (2): 201


  • Multiple system atrophy with predominant parkinsonism (MSA-P) can hardly be distinguished from Parkinson's disease (PD) clinically in the early stages. This study investigated whether a standardized T1-weighted/T2-weighted ratio (sT1w/T2w ratio) can effectively detect degenerative changes in the middle cerebellar peduncle (MCP) associated with MSA-P and PD and evaluated its potential to distinguish between these two diseases. We included 35 patients with MSA-P, 32 patients with PD, and 17 controls. T1w and T2w scans were acquired using a 1.5-T MR system. The MCP sT1w/T2w ratio was analyzed via SPM12 using a region-of-interest approach in a normalized space. The diagnostic performance of the MCP sT1w/T2w ratio was compared between the MSA-P, PD, and controls. Patients with MSA-P had significantly lower MCP sT1w/T2w ratios than patients with PD and controls. Furthermore, MCP sT1w/T2w ratios were lower in patients with PD than in the controls. The MCP sT1w/T2w ratio showed excellent or good accuracy for differentiating MSA-P or PD from the control (area under the curve (AUC) = 0.919 and 0.814, respectively) and substantial power for differentiating MSA-P from PD (AUC = 0.724). Therefore, the MCP sT1w/T2w ratio is sensitive in detecting degenerative changes in the MCP associated with MSA-P and PD and is useful in distinguishing MSA-P from PD.