Intractable Rare Dis Res. 2021;10(4):276-282. (DOI: 10.5582/irdr.2021.01115)

Serum neurofilament light chain is not a useful biomarker of central nervous system involvement in women with Fabry disease

Hołub T, Kędzierska K, Muras-Szwedziak K, Nowicki M


Neurofilament Light Chain (NfL) serum concentration is a new noninvasive marker of neurodegenerative disorders. Fabry disease (FD) leads to accumulation of glycosphingolipids in tissues leading to progressive damage of critical body systems and organs, including peripheral and central nervous system. There are no established serum markers of neurodegeneration in FD. Our crosssectional single-center study was designed to prove the concept that serum NfL levels could reflect the severity of cognitive impairment and indirectly, the level of central nervous system involvement in women at earlier stages of FD. Twelve women with a diagnosis of FD confirmed by genetic tests and 12 matched healthy subjects were included. Serum concentrations of NfL were measured in all subjects together with neuropsychological tests that included Mini Mental State Examination (MMSE) and Montreal Cognitive Assessment Scale (MoCA). Quality of life was assessed with the Short Form Survey (SF-36). FD patients and healthy subjects did not differ with respect to serum NfL concentration, results of neuropsychological tests and quality of life. There was a significant positive correlation between NfL and globotriaosylosphingosine (lyso-Gb3) concentration in women with FD (R = 0,69, p = 0.01). There was also a correlation between NfL concentration and MoCA score but not MMSE score. Receiver operating characteristic (ROC) analysis showed that the best predictor for Mild Cognitive Impairment in both groups was eGFR. Serum NfL concentration does not appear to predict the degree of nervous system involvement in women with FD.

KEYWORDS: biomarker, neurodegeneration, quality of life

Full Text: