Luminescent conjugated oligothiophenes distinguish between α-synuclein assemblies of Parkinson's disease and multiple system atrophy

Therése Klingstedt, Bernardino Ghetti, Janice L. Holton, Helen Ling, K. Peter R. Nilsson, Michel Goedert

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Scopus citations


Synucleinopathies [Parkinson's disease with or without dementia, dementia with Lewy bodies and multiple system atrophy] are neurodegenerative diseases that are defined by the presence of filamentous α-synuclein inclusions. We investigated the ability of luminescent conjugated oligothiophenes to stain the inclusions of Parkinson's disease and multiple system atrophy. They stained the Lewy pathology of Parkinson's disease and the glial cytoplasmic inclusions of multiple system atrophy. Spectral analysis of HS-68-stained inclusions showed a red shift in multiple system atrophy, but the difference with Parkinson's disease was not significant. However, when inclusions were double-labelled for HS-68 and an antibody specific for α-synuclein phosphorylated at S129, they could be distinguished based on colour shifts with blue designated for Parkinson's disease and red for multiple system atrophy. The inclusions of Parkinson's disease and multiple system atrophy could also be distinguished using fluorescence lifetime imaging. These findings are consistent with the presence of distinct conformers of assembled α-synuclein in Parkinson's disease and multiple system atrophy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number193
JournalActa Neuropathologica Communications
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 3 2019



  • Luminescent conjugated oligothiophene
  • Multiple system atrophy
  • Neurodegeneration
  • Parkinson's disease
  • Spectral analysis
  • α-Synuclein

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience

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