Effects of Levodopa on Regional Cerebral Metabolism and Blood Flow

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Levodopa (l-dopa) has been at the forefront of antiparkinsonian therapy for a half century. Recent advances in functional brain imaging have contributed substantially to the understanding of the effects of l-dopa and other dopaminergic treatment on the activity of abnormal motor and cognitive brain circuits in Parkinson's disease patients. Progress has also been made in understanding the functional pathology of dyskinesias, a common side effect of l-dopa treatment, at both regional and network levels. Here, we review these studies, focusing mainly on the new mechanistic insights provided by metabolic brain imaging and network analysis. © 2014 International Parkinson and Movement Disorder Society

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