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Patients with isolated rapid-eye-movement sleep behaviour disorder (RBD) are commonly regarded as being in the early stages of a progressive neurodegenerative disease involving α-synuclein pathology, such as Parkinson's disease, dementia with Lewy bodies, or multiple system atrophy. Abnormal α-synuclein deposition occurs early in the neurodegenerative process across the central and peripheral nervous systems and might precede the appearance of motor symptoms and cognitive decline by several decades. These findings provide the rationale to develop reliable biomarkers that can better predict conversion to clinically manifest α-synucleinopathies. In addition, biomarkers of disease progression will be essential to monitor treatment response once disease-modifying therapies become available, and biomarkers of disease subtype will be essential to enable prediction of which subtype of α-synucleinopathy patients with isolated RBD might develop.

Original publication




Journal article


Lancet Neurol

Publication Date





671 - 684


Biomarkers, Disease Progression, Humans, Prognosis, REM Sleep Behavior Disorder, Synucleinopathies, alpha-Synuclein