Gender differences in the risk of familial parkinsonism: Beyond LRRK2?

R. Saunders-Pullman, K. Stanley, M. San Luciano, M. J. Barrett, V. Shanker, D. Raymond, L. J. Ozelius, S. B. Bressman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


G2019S mutations in the LRRK2 gene are responsible for up to 18% of PD in individuals of Jewish descent. While a male preponderance of Parkinson disease (PD) has been consistently reported, this gender difference is not noted in LRRK2 G2019S mutation carriers. In order to test whether there is an increased genetic component in women of Jewish background in general, we examined family history of parkinsonism in 175 Jewish PD patients (82 female and 93 male) and assessed whether parkinsonism was more frequent in family members of women with PD in comparison with family members of men with PD, adjusting for LRRK2 G2019S mutations in the proband. Using Cox proportional hazard models to evaluate the risk of parkinsonism among family members of PD subjects, having a daughter with PD compared with a son was associated with increased risk of parkinsonism in the parent (HR 2.59, p = 0.014) as was having a child with a LRRK2 G2019S mutation (HR 3.19, p = 0.003). The increased risk among parents of women with PD persisted when adjusting for LRRK2 status (HR 2.19, p = 0.023). Among individuals of Jewish descent, there is a relatively greater genetic load in women with PD, and this is not fully accounted for by the G2019S mutation. Further study that evaluates family information bias and assesses the role of glucocerebrosidase mutations is indicated.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)125-128
Number of pages4
JournalNeuroscience Letters
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1 Jun 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • Family history
  • Gender
  • Genetic
  • Jewish
  • LRRK2
  • Parkinson disease
  • Women


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